Friday, September 17, 2021

Former Minneapolis Officers Plead Not Guilty to Violating George Floyd’s Civil Rights

George Floyd - Cops-Chauvin-Kueng-Lane-Thao
George Floyd – Cops-Chauvin-Kueng-Lane-Thao

*Four former Minneapolis police officers involved in the death of George Floyd pleaded not guilty in federal court Tuesday to charges they violated Floyd’s civil rights during his arrest in May 2020.

Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao have been charged with violating Floyd’s constitutional rights in ways that “resulted in bodily injury to, and the death of, George Floyd,” according to the federal grand jury indictment.

Per CNN, a federal grand jury indicted the ex-cops in May. Thao and Kueng also were charged for failure to intervene while Chauvin used his knee on Floyd’s neck to crush the life out of him.

Floyd, a Black man, died on Memorial Day in 2020 after Chauvin, who is white, pinned his knee against Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes as Floyd cried out for his mother and said “I can’t breathe” more than 20 times. Video footage of the fatal encounter went viral, fueling worldwide protests in response to Floyd’s killing. 

READ MORE: Derek Chauvin Sentenced to 22 Years for Murder of George Floyd

George Floyd and daughter Gianna
George Floyd and daughter Gianna

Chauvin, Thao, Kueng and Lane also face a charge for failing to give Floyd medical aid while detained.

According to the indictment, “the defendants saw George Floyd lying on the ground in clear need of medical care, and willfully failed to aid Floyd, thereby acting with deliberate indifference to a substantial risk of harm to Floyd.”

The federal indictment accuses Chauvin, Thao, Kueng and Lane of depriving Floyd of his rights when they witnessed him “in clear need” of medical care but “willfully failed to aid Floyd.”

The officers acted “with deliberate indifference to a substantial risk of harm,” the indictment said.

Chauvin was convicted of Floyd’s murder in April 2021 and is imprisoned at Minnesota’s maximum-security prison in Oak Park Heights, where he is currently serving a 22.5-year sentence. 

Thao, Kueng and Lane are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death. They have pleaded not guilty and their state trial has yet to begin. 

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.



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