Minneapolis Mayor Calls For Charges Against Officer Who Knelt On George Floyd's Neck

by Valerie Williams
Originally Published: 
Minneapolis Mayor Calls For Charges Against Officer Who Knelt On George Floyd's Neck
People hold up their fists after protesting near the spot where George Floyd died while in custody of the Minneapolis Police, on May 26, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. KEREM YUCEL/Getty

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey calls for arrest of officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck resulting in his death

In the wake of a black men’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police officers, the city’s mayor, Jacob Frey, is calling for charges against the arresting officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck, resulting in his death.

Frey took to Twitter on May 27th writing, “If most people, particularly people of color, had done what a police officer did late Monday, they’d already be behind bars. That’s why today I’m calling on Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman to charge the arresting officer in this case.”

Frey continued: “There are precedents and protocols sitting in the reserves of institutions like this one that will give you about a thousand reasons not to do something. To not speak out. To not move so quickly.”

But, he says, “we can’t turn a blind eye.”

“George Floyd deserves justice,” he writes. “The Black community deserves justice. His friends and family deserve Justice.”

Floyd died on Monday, May 25th, 2020 after the arresting officer knelt on his neck for eight minutes while Floyd begged him to stop because he couldn’t breathe. “Please, please, please, I can’t breathe,” Floyd said. “My stomach hurts. My neck hurts. Please, please. I can’t breathe.”

Video footage of the encounter was shared widely on social media this week, likely prompting the action that resulted in the officers involved being fired — but losing their jobs, as Frey points out, is not enough. If anyone else stopped the airway of another human being and ultimately killed them, losing their job is not the only consequence they’d face.

Floyd’s family is calling for all of the officers involved to face charges. “I would like for those officers to be charged with murder because that’s exactly what they did. They murdered my brother; he was crying for help,” Bridgett Floyd said on the “TODAY” show Wednesday, saying the loss of her brother was “heartbreaking” for their family. According to NBC News, Minneapolis police said in a statement yesterday that they were responding to a report of a forgery when Floyd “physically resisted” and that he died after “suffering medical distress.”

“You look at the video, and it doesn’t seem like he was posing a threat to police officers, and they did not have to use lethal excessive force,” civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, who is representing Floyd’s family, told CNN last night. “It’s worse than Eric Garner in many ways because you hear the people even pleading with them, ‘Please get your knee off his neck. Have some humanity; this is a human being,'” Crump said on TODAY.

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