Cop Who Spent 7 Minutes Crushing George Floyd's Neck Charged With Murder

by Julie Scagell
Jovan Brock, center, holds a sign during a protest at the Colorado State Capitol in Denver on Thursd...
Jovan Brock, center, holds a sign during a protest at the Colorado State Capitol in Denver on Thursday evening, May 28, 2020. Hyoung Chang/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post/Getty

Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd

As protesting and rioting continue in Minneapolis over the death of George Floyd, police finally arrest the fired Minneapolis police officer who was seen on video pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck.

Derek Chauvin is now in custody for the murder of Floyd after Chauvin was captured on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck while he was handcuffed and telling officers he couldn’t breathe. John Harrington, Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, announced that Chauvin was under arrest by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. Officers were responding to a report of a forgery at a grocery store when they encountered Floyd outside.

Chauvin will be facing third-degree murder and manslaughter charges, according to Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman during his scheduled press conference. He stated more charges may be added. The maximum penalty if convicted is up to 25 years in prison.

Chauvin has been with the Minneapolis police department for 19 years and has had multiple complaints filed against him throughout his career, several involving excessive use of force. The status of the three other officers who were at the scene and could be seen at times also holding Floyd down have yet to be charged.

A bystander’s video showed Floyd pleading for his life, repeatedly saying, “I can’t breathe” and ‘they are going to kill me,” as onlookers pleaded with Chauvin to move. The white officer — identified as Chauvin — knelt on his neck and kept his knee there until Floyd stopped moving and became unresponsive.

Leading up to Chauvin’s arrest, peaceful protests have turned violent after police dropped tear gas and used rubber bullets on the crowd.

The announcement of the arrest came shortly after Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz held a press conference, calling for order in the streets of Minneapolis “so we can restore justice.” He acknowledged the “abject failure” of the response to this week’s protests and called for swift justice for the officers involved.

President Donald Trump threatened action after calling those involved in the uprising “thugs,” tweeting “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”

Bridgett Floyd, Floyd’s sister, said on the TODAY show Wednesday morning that she wants all of the officers involved to be charged with murder. “They murdered my brother,” she said. “He was crying for help.”

Harrington called Floyd’s death a murder. “That’s what it looked like to me,” he said. “I’ll call it as I see it.”