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posted by martyb on Tuesday June 02 2020, @07:30PM   Printer-friendly

African-American George Floyd's death has led to marches, demonstrations, acts of violence, and looting across the USA and in other parts of the world. Emotions are running high. We will not attempt to accuse or defend anyone here. Just attempt to lay out the information we have and offer it up for the community to discuss. Many comments about this incident have been posted to unrelated stories on this site. This is, therefore, an attempt to provide one place on SoylentNews where people are encouraged to discuss it. So as to not derail other stories on the site, I kindly ask you focus those comments here.

Wikipedia has a page about this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killing_of_George_Floyd (permanent link to the page as it appeared at the time of writing):

On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, an African-American man, was killed in the Powderhorn community of Minneapolis, Minnesota. While Floyd was handcuffed and lying face down on a city street during an arrest, Derek Chauvin, a white American Minneapolis police officer, kept his knee on the right side of Floyd's neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds; according to the criminal complaint against Chauvin, 2 minutes and 53 seconds of that time occurred after Floyd became unresponsive.[3][4][5][6][7] Officers Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng, and Thomas K. Lane participated in Floyd's arrest, with Kueng holding Floyd's back, Lane holding his legs, and Thao looking on and preventing intervention by an onlooker as he stood nearby.[8]:6:24[9][10]

The arrest was made after Floyd was accused of using a counterfeit $20 bill at a market.[11] Police said Floyd physically resisted arrest.[12][13] Some media organizations commented that a security camera from a nearby business did not show Floyd resisting.[14][15] The criminal complaint filed later said that based on body camera footage, Floyd repeatedly said he couldn't breathe while standing outside the police car, resisted getting in the car and intentionally fell down.[16][17][18][19] Several bystanders recorded the event on their smartphones, with one video showing Floyd repeating "Please", "I can't breathe", "Mama", and "Don't kill me" being widely circulated on social media platforms and broadcast by the media.[20] While knee-to-neck restraints are allowed in Minnesota under certain circumstances, Chauvin's usage of the technique has been widely criticized by law enforcement experts as excessive.[21][22][23] All four officers were fired the day after the incident.[24]

[...] Charges: Third-degree murder (Chauvin) Second-degree manslaughter (Chauvin)

This has been extensively covered by the media. Some outlets attempt to put their own interpretations on their coverage with their selection of video footage and with their commentary. It is difficult to find a simple video of the incident. Here is one that has coverage from the time of initial encounter of the police the officers with George Floyd up through his being taken away by ambulance. The video is a composite of shots from a restaurant's surveillance camera (Dragon Wok), Officer body cam, and bystander cell phones. YouTube footage: Full George Floyd Available Footage (21:12). If anyone has more complete footage of the arrest, please mention it clearly (with a link) in the comments.

Lastly, this is a hard time for everybody. Pandemic. Lock-down. Unemployment. Fears. Please be mindful of others' circumstances when commenting. We are a community sprung from a time of challenge. Let us continue to be here for one-another during this difficult time. SoylentNews is People.


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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Thexalon on Wednesday June 03 2020, @12:00AM (1 child)

    by Thexalon (636) on Wednesday June 03 2020, @12:00AM (#1002504)

    All told, even though the police brutality footage looks bad, and every bit of that is unacceptable behavior for the situation, it's not quite Kent State.

    So far 3 people are dead, and many more are injured. So while it's not *quite* Kent State (which killed 4), it's pretty damn close. Just because those killings are spread out over a wide geographic area and over several days rather than 7 seconds doesn't make it not as bad.

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  • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday June 03 2020, @03:00AM

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday June 03 2020, @03:00AM (#1002561)

    Just because those killings are spread out over a wide geographic area and over several days rather than 7 seconds doesn't make it not as bad.

    Something inherently difficult for people to wrap their heads around: there's a lot of damn people in this world. 4 dead in 7 seconds at one college war rally is a hell of a lot more violent than 3 dead spread over days of nationwide rioting. Hell, 3 of the protesters have likely died of natural causes by now given the numbers and timespan. The map here [nytimes.com] shows 120 protest sites, as of 2 days ago.

    You can get on social media and get a dizzying array of video of people acting badly on both sides, provided with little context and presented for maximum effect by whoever is choosing to share and repost it. What you can't do is travel back to Alabama (or a half dozen similar states) in the 1960s and see all the beatings, killings, and non-prosecuted offences that went on during the civil rights protests back then.

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