Police body-cam footage offers devastating account of George Floyd's fatal arrest in Minneapolis

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  • July 16, 2020
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Newly available body-camera video from two Minneapolis police officers involved in George Floyd‘s arrest shows him pleading with officers in the minutes before his death.

Mr Floyd tells officers he is “not a bad guy” as they try to wrestle him into a squad car. A few minutes later he lays face down on the street and the cameras record his fading voice as he eventually goes motionless.

The footage, which shows the officers continue to keep Mr Floyd in a restrained position, was filed last week by an lawyer seeking to have charges dismissed against one of the four police officers charged in the case.

A district judge declined to allow the video’s publication but allowed news outlets to view the footage, which show the clearest picture yet of Mr Floyd’s last moments in Minneapolis on May 25.

Mr Floyd’s death sparked protests against racial discrimination across the US which spread across the world.

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Though transcripts of the footage were released earlier, the video itself is the fullest public view yet of Mr Floyd’s interaction with the officers who were later charged over his death.

The screening comes the same day Mr Floyd’s family filed a lawsuit against the city of Minneapolis and the four police officers charged in his death.

They allege the officers violated Mr Floyd’s rights when they restrained him and that the city allowed a culture of excessive force, racism and impunity to flourish in its police force.

The lawsuit, filed in US District Court in Minnesota, was announced by Ben Crump and other lawyers representing Mr Floyd’s family members.

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“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,” Mr 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.”

Mr Crump said the action seeks to set a precedent “that makes it financially prohibitive for police to wrongfully kill marginalised people – especially black people – in the future.”

Mr Floyd died after Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, pressed his knee against his neck for nearly eight minutes as Mr Floyd said he could not breathe. Chauvin is charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter.

Three other officers at the scene – Tou Thao, Thomas Lane and J Kueng – are charged with aiding and abetting both second-degree murder and manslaughter.