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3 more cops charged in George Floyd death, other officer’s murder charge upgraded

Published Wed, Jun 3 20202:10 PM EDTUpdated 17 min agoTucker Higgins@in/tucker-higgins-5b162295/@tuckerhigginsDan Mangan@_DanManganKey Points

  • Three former Minneapolis police officers were charged Wednesday with aiding and abetting murder in connection with the death of George Floyd in their custody, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced on Wednesday.
  • In addition, Derek Chauvin, a fourth former officer who had already been charged with third-degree murder in the case, will now be charged with second-degree murder in addition to the previous charges against him, Ellison said.
  • “We are here today because George Floyd is not here,” Ellison, a Democrat, said at a news conference announcing the charges. Ellison predicted that the cases against the officers could take months, and urged the public to be patient as his office builds cases. 
A screen grab of video obtained by NBC News appears to show three officers kneeling on the ground near Floyd, while another stands nearby.

A screen grab of video obtained by NBC News appears to show three officers kneeling on the ground near Floyd, while another stands nearby.NBC

Three former Minneapolis police officers were charged Wednesday with aiding and abetting murder in connection with the death of George Floyd in their custody, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced on Wednesday.

In addition, Derek Chauvin, a fourth former officer who had already been charged with third-degree murder in the case, will now be charged with second-degree murder in addition to the previous charges against him, Ellison said.

“We are here today because George Floyd is not here,” Ellison, a Democrat, said at a news conference announcing the charges. Ellison predicted that the cases against the officers could take months, and urged the public to be patient as his office builds cases. 

“George Floyd mattered. He was loved. His family was important. His life had value. And we will seek justice for him and for you,” Ellison said. He noted that winning the cases “will not be an easy thing. Winning a conviction will be hard.”

“In order to be thorough, this is going to take months, and I do not know how many,” Ellison said. “But it is better to make sure we have a solid case, fully investigated, researched, before we go to trial, than to rush it. It will take a while and I can’t set a deadline on that.”

Chauvin, who is white, was charged Friday with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter after video footage emerged showing him kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes as Floyd, a black man, lay handcuffed, crying out that he could not breathe. 

The three ex-cops who had not yet been charged, Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane, assisted Chauvin in arresting Floyd on Memorial Day on suspicion that Floyd passed a counterfeit bill. All four officers were fired last week. 

Drew Evans, the superintendent of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, appeared alongside Ellison and said that one of the officers facing an aiding and abetting charge was in custody, and the other two were expected to be taken into custody later in the day.

He did not specify which of the three was already in custody. Chauvin has been in custody since last week.