4 cops indicted on civil rights charges — George Floyd death

Derek Chauvin, 3 Others Now Face Federal Criminal Charges : Live Updates: Trial Over George Floyd's Killing

They were allowed to remain free after Friday's federal court appearance.

A second count says he "held his knee on the neck and the upper back of the teenager even after the teenager was lying prone, handcuffed, and unresisting, also resulting in bodily injury". State prosecutors also said that Thao held back bystanders and kept them from intervening during over nine minutes of restraint.

Chauvin's attorney, Eric Nelson, argued during his murder trial that Chauvin acted reasonably in the situation and that Floyd died because of underlying health issues and drug use. Chauvin has moved for a new trial, citing alleged jury misconduct and pretrial publicity. Kueng's attorney also had no comment. Messages left with attorneys for two of the other officers were not immediately returned, and an attorney for the fourth officer was getting in an elevator and disconnected when reached by The Associated Press.

"What we couldn't get them to do in the case of Eric Garner, Michael Brown in Ferguson, and countless others, we are finally seeing them do today and this is a significant development for those of us who have been engaged in the struggle and police reform movement".

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this post incorrectly reported all four officers were accused of unreasonable use of force.

Such federal charges are rare, in part because it is hard to meet the high legal bar they require.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, who led the state's prosecution against Chauvin, called the charges "entirely appropriate", saying the federal government had a "responsibility to protect the civil rights of every American and to pursue justice to the fullest extent of federal law".

The federal charges come in addition to the state's cases, meaning all four could face new trials in federal court.

An indictment unsealed Friday names Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, J. Kueng, and Tou Thao. The four officers were charged with failure to provide Floyd with medical care. Floyd's young daughter met President Joe Biden on the campaign trial, and he often repeats her statement that her "daddy changed the world".

In late April, the Justice Department indicted three men on federal hate crime charges in the February 2020 death of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25-year-old Black man who was running in a Georgia neighborhood when he was chased down and shot. To succeed, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Chauvin acted "willfully" to deprive Floyd of his civil rights and used force that was "constitutionally unreasonable".

The Justice Department investigation has run parallel to the state's cases. The first question asked: "Did you, or someone close to you, participate in any of the demonstrations or marches against police brutality that took place in Minneapolis after George Floyd's death?"

A day after the conviction of former officer Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd, the entire Minneapolis police department is under a federal investigation.

Chauvin is to be sentenced on June 25 and faces up to 40 years in prison on the most serious charge - second-degree murder.

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