A Black US man, George Floyd has been killed by a police officer who pinned him down with his knee, leading to massive outrage on social media.
A shocking video showed the police officer pinning down George Floyd to the pavement with his knee on the man’s neck for several minutes, despite the black man yelling that he cannot breathe.
Floyd was identified by prominent civil rights lawyer Ben Crump, who said he had been retained by the Floyd family.
A police statement said officers were responding to a “forgery in progress.” “Officers were advised that the suspect was sitting on top of a blue car and appeared to be under the influence,” the statement said. “Two officers arrived and located the suspect, a male believed to be in his 40s, in his car. He was ordered to step from his car.
“After he got out, he physically resisted officers. Officers were able to get the suspect into handcuffs and noted he appeared to be suffering medical distress. Officers called for an ambulance,” according to the statement.
The man died soon after, the statement said, adding: “At no time were weapons of any type used by anyone involved in this incident. … Body worn cameras were on and activated during this incident.”
How George Floyd was killed
George Floyd can be heard saying in the video: “Please, please, I cannot breathe.”
The officer tells Floyd to “relax”.
Floyd responds: “I can’t breathe. Please, the knee in my neck.”
The officer continues to hold down Floyd with his knee for several minutes, with Floyd pleading and asking for water.
“My stomach hurts. My neck hurts. Please, please. I can’t breathe,” Floyd cries out, while moaning and trying to cough.
Floyd eventually appears motionless under the officer’s knee.
Those who were watching the incident unfold can be heard begging police to move off Floyd.
Watch the shocking video below;
This is George Floyd. You are probably wondering why he is being choked to DEATH by this cop right here. Under not the crime, but the raised suspicion of forging a bad cheque at a grocery store. Not that it would have even mattered, this is clear cut police brutality! pic.twitter.com/LHTgwiP6LY
— ayub (@holygulag) May 26, 2020
The four responding officers involved in the incident in south Minneapolis that led to the death of George Floyd have been terminated, according to Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey.
“This is the right call,” Frey said in a statement on Twitter.
Frey and Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo addressed the community Tuesday afternoon regarding the firing of the officers.
“When Mayor Frey appointed me as chief of the Minneapolis police department, I was very steadfast and strong on what our department vision, values and culture change would be moving forward. One of those pillars is sanctity of life,” Arradondo said. “We know there are inherent dangers in the profession of policing but the vast majority of the work we do never require the use of force.”
Monday night’s incident comes on the heels of several cases of Black men and women being killed by police or former law enforcement across the US.