The mayor of Minneapolis called Wednesday for criminal charges against the white police officer seen on video kneeling against the neck of a handcuffed black man who complained that he could not breathe and died in police custody. I saw nothing that would signal that this kind of force was necessary.”
The day after Floyd died, Chauvin and three other officers were fired — an act that did not stem the flood of anger that followed the widely seen video shot on Memorial Day outside a convenience store. “We will demand and ultimately force lasting change by shining a light on treatment that is horrific and unacceptable and by winning justice.”
Police Chief Medaria Arradondo, who rose to the top job after his predecessor was forced out following the 2017 shooting of an unarmed white woman by a black Minneapolis officer, urged protesters to “be respectful.” He said he was working to change the department’s culture.
Democrat Joe Biden said Floyd’s death was “part of an ingrained, systemic cycle of injustice that still exists in this country” and “cuts at the very heart of our sacred belief that all Americans are equal in rights.”
It also “sends a very clear message to the black community and black lives that are under threat every single day,” Biden added, saying he was glad the mayor and the police department fired the officers, “but I don’t think that’s enough.”
A 2017 Pew Research Center study found that police think the public does not understand the risks they face. A more recent study from September showed police were considered more trustworthy than Congress, but only 33% of black adults and half of Hispanics say they believe officers treat racial and ethnic groups equally.
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