Fired Minneapolis officer charged with murder in death of George Floyd


Fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin has been arrested days after the death of George Floyd, which sparked protests and unrest in the city. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter.

John Harrington, the commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, said the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has taken Chauvin into custody. Floyd was seen on a disturbing video begging for air as Chauvin pressed his knee into his neck.

Freeman said the investigation is ongoing into the other three officers involved, all of whom have been fired. Freeman said his office wanted to focus on the "most dangerous perpetrator." Chauvin was arrested at 11:44 a.m. in Minneapolis, according to the BCA.

"This is by far the fastest we have ever charged a police officer," Freeman said.

The FBI is also investigating whether civil rights charges are appropriate. When Freeman spoke with federal prosecutors at a press conference Thursday night, both indicated a charging decision was still far off and pending an investigation by the BCA and FBI.

Freeman said he developed the appropriate evidence to file the charge in the hours since. Overnight, violence flared in the Twin Cities, with protesters torching the police station where the four officers worked.

Protestors demonstrate outside of a burning fast food restaurant, Friday, May 29, 2020, in Minneapolis over the police death of George Floyd. AP/John Minchillo

Benjamin Crump, an attorney who is representing Floyd's family, called the arrest "a step on the road to justice."

"Now the officers who stood by and did NOTHING to save George need to be arrested and charged as well," Crump wrote.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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