Family members of George Floyd — the man who died in Minneapolis after a police officer kneeled on his neck for several minutes — have said that they want the four police officers who were involved in the incident charged with murder, CNN reported on Wednesday. Two of Floyd’s brothers and one of his cousins spoke to CNN about Floyd’s death, saying that the police officers involved treated Floyd, “worse than they treat animals.”
One of Floyd’s brothers — Philonise Floyd — insisted that the officers could have handled the incident in a way that wouldn’t have resulted in his brother’s death.
“They could have tased him; they could have maced him. Instead, they put their knee in his neck and just sat on him and then carried on.”
Floyd’s cousin — Tera Brown — pointed out that though law enforcement’s main job is to ensure the safety of citizens, these police officers did nothing to help her cousin.
“They were supposed to be there to serve and to protect and I didn’t see a single one of them lift a finger to do anything to help while he was begging for his life. Not one of them tried to do anything to help him,” Brown said.
Brown and Floyd’s brothers told CNN‘s Don Lemon that Floyd was a kind man who wasn’t capable of violence of any kind. They said that everyone who knew him loved him.
Three police officers handcuffed and pinned George Floyd to the ground, killing him. The fourth officer made sure no one could save him. Yet all four police officers are still FREE. Why? pic.twitter.com/AQlDc7tzAh
— Donna Imam (@donnaimamTX) May 27, 2020
On Tuesday, a video emerged of Floyd’s fatal interaction with the four Minneapolis police officers. In the video, one of the police officers was seen kneeling on Floyd’s neck to restrain him on the ground. Floyd was heard several times saying that he could not breathe. The other officers in the video did not intervene with the officer kneeling on his neck, even as bystanders began to comment on the situation.
All four of the police officers involved in the incident were fired on Tuesday evening. The FBI announced that it is investigating the incident. The mayor of Minneapolis, the Governor of Minnesota, and Congresspeople representing the state all spoke out in support of the firings and pledged that justice would be served.
For Floyd’s family, justice means seeing the four police officers convicted of murdering their beloved relative.
“In this case, this was clearly murder. We want to see them arrested. We want to see them charged. We want to see them convicted for what they did,” Brown told CBS News on Wednesday morning.
Rodney Floyd — another of George’s brothers — agreed, telling CBS News that he believes the video plainly shows his brother being murdered.
“You have eyes, I have eyes. You don’t need to believe what they say. You can see what you saw and I saw, and the whole nation saw, the country saw, and every person, black person in America saw the same thing because it don’t happen to nobody else.”
Floyd’s family members told both CNN and CBS News that firing the officers was not enough because they need to be held legally responsible for causing Floyd’s death.