Four Former Police Officers in Floyd Case Face Federal Charges

George Floyd Officers Civil Rights

Derek Chauvin, J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao. Specifically, Chauvin, Thao and Kueng are charged with violating Floyd's right to be free from unreasonable seizure and excessive force.

Count three is against all four former officers, and claims that by not giving Floyd medical care and aid, they "willfully deprived Mr. Floyd of his constitutional right not to be deprived of liberty without due process of law, which includes an arrestee's right to be free from a police officer's deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs".

Chauvin was also charged in a second indictment, stemming from the arrest and neck restraint of a 14-year-old boy in 2017.

Along with that, the three officers and former cop Thomas Lane were charged with failing to give Floyd medical aid.

In those cases, officers can argue in their own defense that they acted out of fear, panic or even poor judgment, some of which featured in Chauvin's defense to state charges in a trial that concluded with a conviction on all counts last month.

The other three former officers face a state trial in August, and are free on bail. After appearing in court Friday morning over the new federal charges against them, all three were released on $25,000 bond.

Chauvin was charged separately in another indictment for allegedly holding an unnamed juvenile "by the throat" and hitting that minor "multiple times in the head with a flashlight". State prosecutors also said that Thao held back bystanders and kept them from intervening during over nine minutes of restraint.

The video went viral and sparked protests against racial injustice and police brutality across the United States and around the world.

Protesters
Protests spread across the US

Lane, Kueng, and Thao have pleaded not guilty to charges against them, including aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter and aiding and abetting second-degree murder.

News of the indictments were celebrated by civil rights leaders and activists like the Rev. Al Sharpton and the National Action Network, who said in a statement the charges show "we have a Justice Department that deals with police criminality and does not excuse it".

The Rev. Al Sharpton, a longtime civil rights figure who has eulogized George Floyd at his funeral past year and has been a visible supporter of the family, said in a statement that the "shows we have a Justice Department that deals with police criminality and does not excuse it nor allow police to act as though as what they do is acceptable behavior in the line of duty".

Only Chauvin faces that charge.

The Minneapolis Police and Peace Officers Association, which is providing legal representation for the four officers in their state cases, said it will be doing the same in federal court with the same attorneys.

"No police officer is above the law, nor should they ever be shielded from accountability".

The attorney general announced a pattern-or-practice investigation of the Minneapolis Police Department the following day, examining whether the department has "potentially systemic" issues involving uses of force involving people with behavioral health disabilities and protesters. At the time, it was the most significant civil rights prosecution undertaken by Biden's Justice Department.

"What we couldn't get them to do in the case of Eric Garner, Michael Brown in Ferguson, and countless others, we are finally seeing them do today", Sharpton said". Kim Potter faces a manslaughter charge after the death of Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, Minn.

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