All four police officers involved in George Floyd death charged

The three other police officers involved in the death of George Floyd in the US town of Minnesota have now been charged.

37-year old Thomas Lane, 26-year-old J. Alexander Kueng, and 34-year-old Tou Thao, have now been officially charged with aiding and abetting murder in the second degree.

One of the former officers has been taken into custody already, with two others in the process of being taken into custody.


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Meantime, former officer Derek Chauvin, who was recorded kneeling on George Floyd’s neck for over 8 minutes, causing his death, has had his charges upgraded to second degree murder.

He was initially charged with murder in the third degree, but that’s now changed to second degree unintentional, meaning that prosecutors believe they can prove that he demonstrated an intent to kill, even though the murder wasn’t premeditated.

Prosecutors also believe they can prove that the other former officers actively participated and allowed the death to happen, despite hearing Mr Floyd saying he couldn’t breathe and that he was going to die, in his final moments.

The Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced the new charges this morning, and has promised the family of George Floyd and the wider community that justice will be served.

“George Floyd mattered, he was loved, his family was important, his live had value, and we will seek justice for him and for you, and we will find it,” Attorney General Ellison told reporters this morning.

Mr Ellison added that this legal battle won’t fix the underlying problem that has aggravated the country, and that there is a lot more work to be done by everyone.

“We don’t need to wait for the resolution and investigation of this case, to start that work.

“We need citizens, neighbours, leaders in government and in faith communities, civil and human rights activists, to begin re-writing the rules for a just society now.

“We need new policy and legislation and ways of thinking at the municipal state and federal levels, the world of arts and entertainment can use their cultural influence to inspire the change that we need.

“There is a role for all who dream of a justice that we haven’t yet experienced.

“In the final analysis, a protest can shake a tree and make the fruit fall down. But after that fruit is in reach, collecting it and making the jam must follow.

“The demonstrations and the protests are dramatic and necessary, but building just institutions is more of a slow grind but equally important and we need to begin that work as well,” Attorney General Ellison said.

 

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