Derek Chauvin charged with third-degree murder over George Floyd death

29 May 2020, 18:35

George Floyd died in Minneapolis on Monday
George Floyd died in Minneapolis on Monday. Picture: Social media

By Megan White

Former police officer Derek Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder over the death of George Floyd.

Mr Floyd died after being filmed pleading with police to stop kneeling on him before losing consciousness during an arrest for allegedly trying to use forged documents at a local deli.

Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar said earlier Mr Chauvin's arrest was the "first step towards justice."

Read more: Barack Obama responds to George Floyd death saying 'it should not happen in 2020'

Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington also confirmed Mr Chauvin's arrest on Friday.

Read more: US police arrest CNN reporter and crew live on air in Minneapolis

The other three officers involved in the incident on Monday have also been fired but have not been arrested.

News of the arrest came moments after Minnesota Gov Tim Walz acknowledged the "abject failure" of the response to this week's protests and called for swift justice for officers involved.

Mr Walz said the state would take over the response to the protests and that it is time to show respect and dignity to those who are suffering.

"Minneapolis and St. Paul are on fire. The fire is still smouldering in our streets. The ashes are symbolic of decades and generations of pain, of anguish unheard," Mr Walz said, adding. "Now generations of pain is manifesting itself in front of the world - and the world is watching."

The governor cited a call he received from a state senator who described her district "on fire, no police, no firefighters, no social control, constituents locked in houses wondering what they were going to do. That is an abject failure that cannot happen".

On Friday morning, nearly every building in the shopping district around the abandoned police station had been vandalised, burned or looted.

National Guard members were in the area, with several of them lined up, keeping people away from the police station.

Dozens of fires were also set in nearby St Paul, where nearly 200 businesses were damaged or looted.

Joe Biden says that the "open wound" of systemic racism was behind Mr Floyd's killing.

He also accused President Donald Trump, without mentioning him by name, of inciting violence with a tweet that warned that protesters could be shot.

"We are a country with an open wound. None of us can turn away," Mr Biden said in a brief address.

The Democratic presidential hopeful has built his campaign around a promise to heal "the soul of the nation" and is suddenly getting his chance to try in real time.

Mr Biden said he spoke to the family of Mr Floyd, adding that now was "no time for incendiary tweets. No time to incite violence".

"This is time for real leadership," he said.

Protests spread across the US, fuelled by outrage over Mr Floyd's death, and years of violence against African Americans at the hands of police.

Demonstrators clashed with officers in New York and blocked traffic in Columbus, Ohio, and Denver.

President Trump threatened to bring Minneapolis "under control," calling the protesters "thugs" and tweeting that "when the looting starts, the shooting starts".

The tweet drew another warning from Twitter, which said the comment violated the platform's rules, but the company did not remove it.

President Trump also blasted the "total lack of leadership" in Minneapolis.

Protests first erupted on Tuesday, a day after Mr Floyd's death in a confrontation with police captured on widely seen citizen video.

Attorney Ben Crump, who is representing members of Mr Floyd's family, has called for an independent investigation, and said he asked to take custody of Mr Floyd's body to have an independent autopsy performed.

Mr Crump said that talk of a heart condition or asthma are irrelevant because Mr Floyd was walking and breathing before his contact with police.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Jacob Rees-Mogg has told civil servants to search guests' social media profiles

Trawl guests' social media for 'extremism' and criticism of government policy, Rees-Mogg tells civil servants

Freya the walrus has been killed in Norway after crowds kept getting too close

Freya the walrus put to death in Norway because public wouldn’t stay away

Bus services could be at risk without post-pandemic funding, mayors have warned

Hundreds of bus routes could be axed as communities face being cut off from public transport, mayors warn

Harry and Meghan to return to Britain

Harry and Meghan to return: Sussexes will visit UK next month for the first time since Platinum Jubilee

Anne Heche's life support has been withdrawn after her husband shared a tearful tribute

Anne Heche's life support switched off as ex-husband pays tribute to 'brave and fearless' Hollywood star

Sir Salman Rushdie, far left and top right, and the suspect Hadi Matar, 24 (bottom right)

Salman Rushdie ‘brought attack on himself’ claims Iran’s foreign ministry

Kate and William's move to Windsor will leave no room for their live-in nanny

'No room for a nanny' as Kate and Will downsize to Windsor cottage

A-level pupils are being warned grades will take a hit this year with thousands set to lose their university place

A-level students warned thousands will lose their university place on results day as grades set to take a hit

Sir Keir Starmer has set out Labour's £29 billion emergency cost of living plan

'Consumers won't pay a penny more': Keir Starmer reveals Labour's £29 billion emergency cost of living plan

A man died early Sunday near the US Capitol building after driving his car into a barricade and firing shots into the air before turning his gun on himself, police said

Man dies after crashing vehicle into US Capitol and opening fire before shooting himself

Schools across the country are holding 'crisis meetings' to consider three-day working weeks amid soaring costs

Schools hold 'crisis talks' to consider three-day weeks as teacher salaries and soaring energy bills cripple budgets

The Met Office have issued weather warnings for thunderstorms across the UK

Rain will merely 'scratch the surface' of Britain's drought problems despite flash flood and thunderstorm warnings

Ricardo Dos Santos, bottom right with partner Bianca Williams, has slammed the Met after seven armed officers pulled him over

Fury of sprinter Ricardo Dos Santos as he's stopped by 7 Met cops two years after 'racial profiling' scandal

The youngster was attacked by the Bull Mastiff-type animal (stock picture) in Liverpool.

Boy, 4, suffers life-changing injuries as he's mauled by dog in horrific attack 'at friend's house'

The woman was restrained on a Jet2 flight from Cyprus to Manchester.

Woman 'who stripped to underwear and tried to storm Jet2 cockpit' is restrained by hero dad

Eight people have been injured after a gunman opened fire at a bus stop in Jerusalem.

Gunman opens fire at bus stop in Jerusalem wounding eight people