The family of George Floyd has filed a lawsuit against the city of Minneapolis and the officers involved in his death.
In a report from the Star Tribune, the family is being represented by attorney Ben Crump, and they’re seeking an unspecified amount of damages.
“This complaint shows what we have said all along, that Mr. Floyd died because the weight of the entire Minneapolis Police Department was on his neck,” Crump said in a statement. “The city of Minneapolis has a history of policies, procedures and deliberate indifference that violates the rights of arrestees, particularly Black men, and highlights the need for officer training and discipline. This is an unprecedented case, and with this lawsuit we seek to set a precedent that makes it financially prohibitive for police to wrongfully kill marginalized people — especially Black people — in the future.”
The lawsuit argues that the officers involved in Floyd’s death used deadly force in non-deadly circumstances. Per the Star Tribune:
The lawsuit also alleges that the department engaged in a culture of “warrior-style” or “killology” training, failed to terminate dangerous officers and fostered a culture of racism, leading to a violation of Floyd’s Fourth Amendment rights. The suit requests an unspecified amount of damages.
In related news, the legal team for one of the former Minneapolis police officers charged in Floyd’s death filed a motion to dismiss the charges. The former officer, Thomas Lane, was charged with aiding and abetting second-degree unintentional murder and second-degree manslaughter.
While filing the motion, the defense team turned in a transcript of the arrest. According to the transcripts, Floyd repeatedly told the officers he couldn’t breathe during the arrest. At one point, Derek Chauvin replied “then stop talking, stop yelling, it takes a heck of a lot of oxygen to talk.” In a separate transcript of officer J. Alexander Kueng’s bodycam footage, Chauvin says “takes a heck of a lot of oxygen to say that.”
According to the transcripts, Lane asked Chauvin if Floyd should be rolled on his side, to which Chauvin declined. Subsequently, the transcripts show the moment Lane asks Kueng to check Floyd’s pulse. Lane reportedly later left with the ambulance, helping medical crews until he was no longer needed.
Additionally, George Floyd told the officers he had recently recovered from COVID-19. The bodycam footage has not been released at this point.
According to Lane’s attorney, Earl Grey, his client did not intend to further a crime when he held down Floyd’s legs and feet. He “did not intentionally aid, advise, hire, counsel, or conspire with Chauvin or otherwise procure Chauvin to commit second-degree murder,” Grey reportedly said.
The officers’ trial date is set for March 8, 2021.
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