On Monday, 47-year-old George Floyd, an unarmed African American man accused of presenting a counterfeit $20 bill at a Minneapolis business, died in police custody as Chauvin held his knee against the man’s neck. Floyd repeatedly said that he couldn’t breathe, but neither Chauvin nor any of the three other police officers involved in his arrest helped the dying man. As reported by The Inquisitr, two other officers, identified as Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng, also helped restrain Floyd. An additional officer, Tou Thao, reportedly stood nearby and watched.
Floyd’s death reignited the national conversation about the matter of unarmed African American men dying in police custody and sparked riots in Minneapolis and other cities across the country.
Initially, neither Chauvin nor any of the other police officers involved in Floyd’s death were charged with any crimes, although all four were fired not long after the incident. This was despite the fact that Floyd’s family, as well as Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, all called for the officers to be criminally charged in the incident.
On Thursday, the Justice Department announced that it would be investigating Floyd’s death, in conjunction with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Minnesota and the FBI’s Minneapolis field office.
It remains unclear, as of this writing, if Chauvin’s arrest came about due to the Justice Department investigation.
On Friday, John Harrington, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, announced that Chauvin has been taken into custody in connection with the May 25 death.
BREAKING – MPD Officer Derek Chauvin has been arrested in the death of #GeorgeFloyd.
I am at a news conference in Minneapolis City Hall with black leaders in Minnesota and friends of George Floyd. They found out the news in the moment and this is their response. #WCCO pic.twitter.com/JNOE2zm1IG
— Marielle Mohs (@MarielleMohs) May 29, 2020
As St. Cloud’s KNSI-AM reported, Harrington confirmed that the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension took Chauvin into custody Friday morning. He said that he learned of Chauvin’s arrest after a press conference with Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz concluded.
As of this writing, it remains unclear what criminal charges Chauvin is facing or will be facing. He also noted that, because Chauvin was taken into custody by a statewide agency, he (Harrington) is unaware of the charges, since his jurisdiction includes only Hennepin County.
He did, however, say that, to him, it “looked like” Floyd was murdered.
Harrington has promised a press conference for 1 p.m. Central Time (2 p.m. Eastern Time) on Friday.
This is a breaking news story. More information about the arrest of Derek Chauvin will be published as it becomes available.