George Floyd Murdered By Police And Bystanders

George Floyd Murdered By Police And Bystanders

George Floyd Murdered By Police And Bystanders

Minneapolis resident George Floyd was murdered on Memorial Day, May 26, 2020. No one involved in the situation, from the police, the bystanders, the Mayor, to the rioters, have clean hands in this situation. It would have been easy for this incident to be swept away, if not for the videos.

According to the New York Times:

The arrest of Mr. Floyd took place on Monday evening. The Minneapolis Police Department said in a statement that officers had responded to a call about a man suspected of forgery. The police said the man was found sitting on top of a blue car and “appeared to be under the influence.”

A passive video, provided by a store owner, shows police approach the car. Two people from the front and rear passenger side of the vehicle exit. Mr. Floyd is walked, handcuffed, from the vehicle by an officer. He sits on the ground and appears to be cooperating with the officer as a second squad car pulls up. The police calmly walk Mr. Floyd down the street as the passive video ends.

The second, bystander, video begins with George Floyd on the ground. A police officer has his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck. I know less than zero about proper police procedures, but everything about that is dehumanizing. KSTP Eyewitness News interviewed Mylan Masson, who is a police trainer. He related:

“It is a control technique, so you can make sure that if you control the head, you can control the rest of the body,” Masson explained. “But of course, there are parameters on that. We do a light pressure on there, just enough to stop the threat and we also make sure that, of course, the person isn’t going to be harmed in any way.”

In the video, Floyd can be heard saying he can’t breathe.

“As soon as you hear somebody can’t breathe, you need to ask for medical attention, change your positioning change to see what’s going on,” Masson said.

Masson said MPD also does not typically teach the “knee on neck” technique and instead teaches “knee into shoulder blades” as a restraint tactic.

I am going to post the bystander video. It is truly not safe for anyone. You are watching a man, someone’s beloved, murdered. George Floyd appears to be unconscious at about four minutes into the video. The video goes on for another SIX minutes. The police don’t bother to check for a pulse. Mr. Floyd’s hands are handcuffed behind his back. How hard would it have been to check for a pulse at the wrist. Or, for the animal policeman to take his knee off of George Floyd’s neck and check his pulse. No one does anything to help Mr. Floyd. When the emergency medical personnel show up, they don’t move as if they are at all concerned. Then, they drag Mr. Floyd’s limp body on the road.

I said no one did anything. I mean it. The bystanders videoed and called out the police. No one called 911 to report police brutality. You are not doing anything to help a dying man by trash talking the police. The bystanders are culpable in the death of George Floyd.

The Mayor of Minneapolis, Jacob Frey, is culpable in the death of George Floyd. The mayor of any town or city sets the standards for how citizens are treated. Clearly, Mayor Frey has no control over his police force since four members were fired in this incident and will likely stand trial. In addition, Mayor Frey encouraged citizens to wear masks and go protest:

When asked in the North News interview about protests, Frey said he supports peoples’ right to express themselves and encouraged people to voice their opinions, anger, heartbreak and sadness over Floyd’s death.

But, because we’re in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, he asked people protesting to wear a mask and keep a safe physical distance from others to ensure that this “horrid death” does not lead to more.

I think it’s safe to say that Mayor Frey has the I.Q. of a pound of raw hamburger. Go riot. Wear a mask. Keep a safe physical distance. Please don’t let your head hit the desk too hard.

The rioters covered themselves in shame. Rioting and looting is no way to honor a man who has just died.

George Floyd deserved better from all of you. Shame on Minneapolis.

Featured Image: Taber Andrew Bain/Flickr.com/cropped/Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

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16 Comments
  • GWB says:

    As soon as you hear somebody can’t breathe, you need to ask for medical attention, change your positioning change to see what’s going on
    Though, technically, if they can say they can’t breathe, they can breathe. It might not be well, or adequately, but the body generally doesn’t want to let you waste breath on talking when it’s struggling to get oxygen. (It’s possible to overcome this, but it is hard. IF you’re actually suffocating.)
    But, if they’re saying this, it means they might actually have reduced breathing capacity, and you need to change so … you don’t end up fired and maybe prosecuted.

    I think it’s safe to say that Mayor Frey has the I.Q. of a pound of raw hamburger.
    And I think you’re underestimating the hamburger.

    I do wonder what happened in the time devoid of video that led to the officer kneeling on him. It doesn’t justify 10 minutes of kneeling on or around his neck. (It also doesn’t justify kneeling on his shoulder blades for that long.) But it would be interesting just what level the provocation (or total lack thereof) amounted to.

    <rant>
    The problem with this is the perpetual scream of “RACISM!” that comes out any time there’s video of some bad actor who happens to be black getting whomped/shot by cops. Because of that knee-jerk reaction, every time someone casts aspersions on police, many of us immediately doubt them. It gets really hard to believe police misconduct when so many of the occurrences are fraudulent. So, the pro-police folks harden in their positions, and the racialists scream ever louder.

    And it becomes impossible to provide true justice. Which is the whole purpose of the instigators of this – to make it impossible to rule except by the iron glove of gov’t, letting the elites shape society into their utopia.
    </rant>

  • Jim says:

    “It is a control technique, so you can make sure that if you control the head, you can control the rest of the body,”

    Over four decades working with violent people I often had to use physical restraint when they were out of control and very dangerous to others and themselves. Training courses in the application of restraint emphasise that the neck, i.e. the cervical vertebrae, is out of bounds when it comes to applying pressure to control the violent person. This is because the vertebrae are a potential weak spot, but also one can stop blood flow easily, that’s why MMA fighters seek to apply the rear choke. It was acceptable to apply steady pressure to the skull to hold the person’s head down and thus help control the body and stop the person using his head to butt at others or self-harm by banging his head on the ground. [Had one of my staff pinned a person by kneeling on his neck as in the video he would have been disciplined, even considered to have assaulted the person.] Similarly applying continued pressure to the middle and upper back of a person in prone or held restrained against a wall can easily stop them breathing – there have been cases of enthusiastic and over-excited civilians restraining people they have caught committing crime and then pinning them forcefully with pressure on the thorax so the person dies due to the inability to breathe.

  • Kristian says:

    I think the bystanders contributed more than you described. The heckling of the police got the polices pride, or machismo, involved. They couldn’t be seen to back down. And that, is also related to the training the police receive regarding authority and control. It truly is toxic that we the citizens and they the police see themselves as enforcement officers, not peace officers.

  • Couple points to ponder:
    1) why aren’t the police wearing active body cameras? I have a GoPro that was $400. It fits in the palm of my hand. Don’t tell me it’s a “budget issue”…. It protects police and citizens. Just buy and wear the dang cameras. It’s freaking 2020….
    2) He was handcuffed and (were they following procedures, presumably) had been frisked. How far and fast could he run? So he flops around on the ground… is placing a knee on his chest, neck, spine really necessary? Roll him to his side so it’s hard to bang the ground. I’ve been in handcuffs, and not in a way that implies trashy mom-rom… It’s really uncomfortable to move around and the slightest pressure is magnified in the shoulder joint.
    Body Cameras… have I already said this…. 😉

    • GWB says:

      You would think that after Ferguson*, anyplace that didn’t already have body and dash cameras up and running would have made exceptional commitment to getting them ready.

      (* There was an incident not too long after Ferguson, where the PD had the cameras, but had delayed employing them for budgetary reasons, and a yellow-journalism-ready incident arose. They caught all sorts of hell because they had not deployed their best weapon.)

      However, rolling someone on their side is not as helpful as you might think. First, he won’t stay there – even if he’s not trying to get away, the body is naturally unstable in that position. Second, there’s the issue of all the weight being on the arm and shoulder – definite liability claims later.

      Of course, the reason they had to wrestle at all is because police are not allowed to use the full range of interactions when dealing with perps. Exactly because of responses like this (the riots, not Narcissi’s comment).

  • Bill Groomes says:

    Yeah right, the bystanders should have done something. Whoever wrote this knows nothing about inner-city policing. Any bystanders who would have attempted to interject themselves in this arrest would have been surrounded and manhandled into submission or given a dose of the same treatment. If the police would arrest everyone (non violent crimes) like they did for the college admission scammers, America would not have situations such as this. The police having the presumption of innocence in a ‘he said, she said’ situation is quite different when you have video of the incident. Well, in society where only the little guy gets arrested on the spot, can you expect anything else.

    • Scott says:

      What the bystanders should have done is shut the F*#k up, and let the police do their job. If that had happened the asshole cop likely wouldn’t have felt the need to show he was “in charge”, and murdered Mr. Floyd. The cop should be tried and convicted, but the crowd should understand that they’re partly responsible for the outcome.,

  • Mary Anne Borg says:

    What about using Tasers instead of using this method to bring someone down?

  • Charles N. Steele says:

    You have a remarkably loose definition of murder. You have evidence that Derek Chauvin intended to kill George Floyd?

    One of my former students is a highly trained LEO and explained carefully to me the proper technique for subduing someone using the knee; Chauvin did *not* use it; it is not to the neck, but the back, and not for such a long period. There’s evidence of negligence, malfeasance, manslaughter, but there’s also no evidence he intended to kill George Floyd.

    • Scott says:

      In general, LEO’s (like other professionals in their fields), due to the higher level of training they receive, and the “expertise” they are assumed to have, are held to a higher standard than an average civilian.
      In this case, while a civilian might not understand that kneeling on a mans neck for that long could result in death, a LEO, who has been trained in proper restraint techniques (part of said training almost ALWAYS includes training on what NOT to do, and WHY not to do it), would likely be assumed by a court to clearly understand that such actions could / would result in death, and that taking such actions would at the very least be to disregard the likelihood of death for the party being restrained, or at the worst, to intend to cause death.
      I am a big supporter of law enforcement, as I work with them on a daily basis, but the actions of thugs like this previous officer do damage to the profession as a whole, and make the job much more dangerous for the good men and women doing an often thankless job.
      Give the ex cop a fair trial, and whatever punishment is deemed appropriate by the court, and shoot the looters.

      • Jim says:

        “… said training almost ALWAYS includes training on what NOT to do, and WHY not to do it …”

        Correct. Those giving training in use of physical restraint take great pains to make it clear what injury, even death might ensue, if legitimate techniques are wrongly applied and also what techniques are not safe to use. Trainers themselves would be negligent if they did not make clear such risks.

    • GWB says:

      Scott nailed it. But there is an element to your statement that is important: what will a jury feel is “over-charging”?

      It’s not so much that you can’t make an argument (as Scott does) for murder, but whether (as in one or two other cases in the last several years) charging murder won’t be seen as over-reaching. Sometimes, if handled properly, a prosecutor can make the case that they have charged murder, leaving it to the jury for “other, lesser, included charges.” But sometimes a jury can resent the prosecution for that and acquit someone on all the charges just because they resent it.

      So, I think you could make the case, but is it the smart case to make.

    • Charles N. Steele says:

      Scott, GWB, you are simply inventing new definitions of murder.

      • Scott says:

        Sorry Charles, not inventing. Here’s the actual charges for the ex officer. you will note what the first one is…

        COUNT I

        Charge: Murder – 3rd Degree – Perpetrating Eminently Dangerous Act and Evincing Depraved Mind
        Minnesota Statute: 609.195(a), with reference to: 609.195(a)
        Maximum Sentence: 25 YEARS
        Offense Level: Felony

        Offense Date (on or about): 05/25/2020

        Control #(ICR#)y: 20200338

        Charge Description: That on or about May 25, 2020, in Hennepin County, Minnesota, Derek Michael Chauvin caused the death of George Floyd by perpetrating an act eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life.

        COUNT II

        Charge: Manslaughter – 2nd Degree – Culpable Negligence Creating Unreasonable Risk
        Minnesota Statute: 609.205(1), with reference to: 609.205
        Maximum Sentence: 10 YEARS AND/OR $20,000
        Offense Level: Felony

        Offense Date (on or about): 05/25/2020

        Control #(ICR#): 20200338

        Charge Description: That on or about May 25, 2020, in Hennepin County, Minnesota, Derek Michael Chauvin caused the death of George Floyd by his culpable negligence, creating an unreasonable risk and taking a chance of causing death or great bodily harm to George Floyd.

  • David Lentz says:

    i am not a lawyer. However if were on a jury, I would consider five or more minutes of the officer’s knee on the decedent’s neck ample evidence of intent to kill. Five ;plus minutes is too long to rationalize away.

  • GWB says:

    I’ll throw in, too, a bit connected to my too often typed rant about the problem with the “thin blue line.”

    If, you don’t bother – as a free citizen, in a republic – to jealously hold your power and to restrain the gov’t, this sort of thing is EXACTLY what you will get.

    If you ensure, by being reliably single party, that only one group of people will hold power in your town/state, they will have NO incentive to listen to you, even when you protest. If you do not first threaten them with removal, and the loss of their power, they will not fear you, and they will make whatever gestures they need to to appease your momentary anger, then go right back to abusing the power which you have entrusted to them.

    All of the places where this is happening are reliably one-party dominions. Even with this event, there will be no attempt to oust the party uniformly in charge and try a different tack. There will be no housecleaning. There will be no thought given to restraining the power of the current gov’t (say, by breaking the city up into smaller boroughs that can govern closer to home). There might be strengthening of some oversight board (which will redound to the benefit of the exact same people who hold power now). But there will be no fundamental change or shift of power to where the people actually hold the gov’t in check.

    Nope. They’ll simply smash their neighborhoods, then cry for someone else to fix them up, and cry for someone else to protect them, and cry for someone else to take the blame.

    This is where we must fight the civil war – getting people to understand they must be responsible for their communities.

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