UPDATED: 3:09 p.m. ET, June 3 —
The fired police officer who killed George Floyd last month has had the murder charge he was facing upgraded, according to a new report. In addition, the other three officers who accompanied Derek Chauvin were expected to be hit with more charges for their role in the preventable death that the medical examiner called a homicide.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Elison announced Wednesday that Chavin’s charge would go from third-degree murder to second-degree, an upgrade that is not insignificant. The other three officers — Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane — were expected to be charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder. All four of them were fired May 26.
This story is developing and will be updated when additional information becomes available.
Original story from May 29:
The fired Minneapolis cop who was captured on video kneeling on the neck of George Floyd during an arrest has been charged with murder.
According to Associated Press, Derek Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman made the announcement after the office collected enough evidence to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt.
A criminal complaint is expected later, and Freeman said there are no major details as of now.
Chauvin is currently in police custody. His arrest comes after nearly a week of protests in Minneapolis, which led to protests across the country.
Cops confronted Floyd on Monday, saying he matched the description of somebody who tried to pay a convenience store with a counterfeit bill, according to authorities. Initial reports said Floyd resisted arrest, but surveillance video was released showing that when he was initially handcuffed, it didn’t appear as if he was resisting. Minutes later, Chauvin’s knee was on Floyd’s neck as he begged for his life. “Don’t kill me!” Floyd can be heard yelling in cell phone footage of the incident. Floyd was already handcuffed at this point. The 46-year-old was pronounced dead after being taken to the hospital.
The four officers involved in the incident, include Chauvin, Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng. There’s no word on if charges will be pressed against the other three. Floyd’s family was seeking murder charges from the start for all the officers involved.
“I would like for those officers to be charged with murder because that’s exactly what they did. They murdered my brother,” Floyd’s sister, Bridgett Floyd emotionally told the “Today” show. “He was crying for help. I don’t need them to be suspended and able to work in another state or another county. Their license should be taken away, their job should be taken away, and they should be put in jail for murder.”
George’s brother, Philonise Floyd, went a step further and said the officers involved should spend the rest of their life in prison. “Knowing my brother is to love my brother,” Philonise Floyd said in an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon. “They could have tased him; they could have maced him. Instead, they put their knee in his neck and just sat on him and then carried on. They treated him worse than they treat animals.”
“They took a life now they deserve life,” Philonise added.