George Floyd was an African-American man who died on May 25, 2020, after Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck for at least seven minutes, while he was handcuffed and lying facedown on the road.
Officers Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng also helped restrain Floyd, while officer Tou Thao stood nearby and looked on.
The incident occurred during an arrest of Floyd in Powderhorn, a community to the south of downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota, and was recorded on cell phone video by several bystanders.
The video recordings, showing Floyd repeatedly saying: “I can’t breathe”, were widely circulated on social media platforms and broadcast by the media. The four officers involved were fired the next day.
Shortly after 8:00 p.m. on May 25, Memorial Day, Minneapolis Police Department officers responded to a “forgery in progress” on Chicago Avenue South in the Powderhorn Park neighborhood of Minneapolis.
According to WCCO, the implication was that Floyd “tried to use forged documents at a nearby deli”. According to a co-owner of Cup Foods, Floyd attempted to use a $20 bill which a staff member identified as counterfeit.
According to police, Floyd was in a nearby car and “appeared to be under the influence”. A spokesman for the police department said the officers ordered him to exit the vehicle, at which point he “physically resisted”.
According to the Minneapolis police, officers “were able to get the suspect into handcuffs and noted he appeared to be suffering medical distress. Officers called for an ambulance.”
No weapons were used in the incident, according to a statement from the Minneapolis police.
Watch the distressing video of Floyd’s arrest on the link provide below. Viewers’ discretion is advised.
Street protests amid the COVID-19 scare are staged in many parts in the U.S. decrying the arrest resulting to the death of a black man.