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George Floyd: the Public Trial

New video footage in the George Floyd murder case involving four Minneapolis police officers on May 25th of this year has surfaced courtesy of the British news outlet, The Daily Mail, who has yet to comment on how they acquired the body cam videos.

 The murder of George Floyd was caught on camera by multiple bystanders who were present at the scene. When the footage went viral, many were outraged which caused an uproar across the nation and even in many other countries. This unfortunate event has resulted in a vast majority of the public participating in protests, petition signing, fundraising, and contacting their local and state representatives to show their support for Floyd with many others who have shared his same fate at the hands of law enforcement.

In the new video footage captured by the body cams of two of the now ex-officers, Floyd is shown struggling in the back of the squad car. When one of the officers asked him why he was having trouble walking, he responded with, “Because, my hands are hurting.” When the officers tried putting him in the car, Floyd was visibly struggling to breathe while begging “please don’t do this” to the officers.

Many have seen the video taken by bystanders of Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck while he lay motionless on the ground. Floyd was calling out that he couldn’t breathe and even that his whole body was in pain, but Chauvin did not move. In the new footage from the body cameras, one of the officers asked Chauvin if they should roll Floyd on his side and Chavin responded, “No, he’s staying put where I got him.”

The recently released footage captured by the body cameras of Officer Thomas Lane and Officer J. Alexander Kueng’s were filed with the court on July 7th by Lane’s attorney in an effort to dismiss the charges against Lane. Lane, Kueng, and Officer Tou Thao who are facing the same two charges: aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding abetting second-degree manslaughter. Chauvin has been charged with second-degree murder and all four officers have been fired.

None of the involved officers has entered an official plea, but Thao and Lane have asked for their charges to be dismissed while Kueng reportedly intends to plead not guilty. Minnesota Attorney General and prosecutor of the case, Keith Ellison, has denied the claims regarding his team leaking the video evidence to the Daily Mail, but promises that they will continue taking strict precautions to ensure a fair trial.

Floyd’s family attorney, Ben Crump, feels strongly that the leaked videos do not show Floyd posing a threat to the officers or anyone else around him. Crump made a statement on Monday, August 3rd, “the police officers approached him with guns drawn, simply because he was a Black man. As this video shows, he never posed any threat. The officers’ contradictions continue to build. If not for the videos, the world might never have known about the wrongs committed against George Floyd.”

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