On August 3rd, the UK outlet Daily Mail leaked police body-cam footage from the arrest that led to George Floyd’s murder on May 25th.
The videos are two, the first, shorter one above shows the police officers pulling Floyd over and ends with their efforts to push the increasingly panicked 46-year-old security guard into a squad car. It reportedly came from the body camera of Minneapolis officer Thomas Lane.
The video begins with officers Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane Floyd’s blue Mercedes SUV on the other side of the street. Lane goes to the driver’s side where Floyd is sitting at the wheel and Kueng approaches the passenger side, where Floyd’s ex, Shawanda Hill is in the back seat and a friend, Maurice Hall, is in the front.
Prior to approaching it, the officers are approached by a Cup Foods employee. “Before they drive off. He’s parked right here. It’s a fake bill from the gentleman,” he tells the policemen.
It is clear from the video that Floyd was not trying to run away – he had plenty of time to leave the scene before police arrived. But instead he decided to sit in his car with two friends, giving the cops the opportunity to approach.
Lane is seen knocking on the car window with his flashlight, but Floyd does not immediately open the door. Once the door is open, Lane immediately pulls out his handgun and points it straight at Floyd’s head.
“Hey man, I’m sorry,” Floyd says and apologizes again before Lane gets belligerent.
“Put your f***ing hands up right now! Let me see your other hand,” the cop is heard saying.
Floyd does not immediately put his hands on the wheel. “Put your f***ing hand up there,” Lane orders him. “Jesus Christ, keep your f**king hands on the wheel.”
Floyd tells the officer he had been shot before, and Lane replies: “Keep your f***ing hands on the wheel.”
The second video, which is 18 minutes long and reportedly comes from the body-cam of Officer Alexander Kueng, it starts inside the store where Floyd allegedly tried to pass a counterfeit bill and ends with police discussing the arrival of the ambulance as they restrain Floyd on the ground.
Neither video contains graphic violence in them.
Floyd repeatedly pleads for his life and begs for his mother, asking the cops if they plan to shoot him and insisting that he’s claustrophobic and can’t sit in the police car.
Floyd resisted as the cops tried to force him into the back of the car, telling them he suffers from claustrophobia and anxiety and how Officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes, leading to his death, ignoring Floyd’s repeated cries of ‘I can’t breathe.’
Floyd is even heard predicting his own death. ‘I’ll probably just die this way,’ he is heard saying.
Transcripts from the videos were released in mid-July but a judge in Minneapolis had ruled the video could only be viewed in the courthouse, meaning few people have had the chance to watch the powerful images.
Officers Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane were the first ones to arrive at Cup Foods, the store in the Powderhorn Park section of Minneapolis. That is where George Floyd had attempted to pay for cigarettes with a fake $20 bill.
Both Kueng and Lane were in their first week as Minneapolis police officers.
Chauvin and a fourth officer, Tou Thao, were called in to assist. All four were fired the day after Floyd’s death.
Chauvin, 44, has been charged with Floyd’s murder and the other three face charges of aiding and abetting murder. The events have led to months of Black Lives Matter protests throughout the country over police racism and brutality.
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