Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced on Friday that his office is charging former police officer Derek Chauvin with third-degree murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd. Freeman also announced a possibility of subsequent charges as review of the evidence continues. The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension took Chauvin into custody on Friday morning.
Chauvin and other officers responded Monday to a 911 call by a store owner that a customer tried using a counterfeit bill. Surveillance footage shows Floyd, an African American, did not resist arrest. Another graphic video [WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT], circulated widely online, shows Floyd handcuffed and on the ground while Chauvin’s knee is pinned on Floyd’s neck for several minutes. Floyd is heard saying multiple times, “I can’t breathe.” Shortly after, Floyd became unresponsive and an ambulance took him to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. The video sparked national outrage and continuous protests over excessive use of force by police against Black Americans.
Freeman further announced that the three other former officers involved, Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng, have not been charged but that the investigation is “ongoing” and that they wanted to focus on the “most dangerous perpetrator.”
A detailed complaint will be made available later Friday.
Meanwhile, protests, at times becoming violent, entered their fourth day Friday in Minneapolis and around the US.