An announcement has been made regarding the officers involved in the killing of George Floyd.
On May 25, Floyd was pronounced dead after Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin pinned the 46-year-old to the ground by kneeling on Floyd's neck. On May 29, after video footage of Floyd's death sparked a call for justice, Chauvin was taken into custody and has since been charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. At the time Chauvin was taken into custody, the three other officers involved—J.A. Keung, Thomas Lane, and Tou Thao—were fired from the police department but not charged.
Now, Attorney General Keith Ellison has announced that the three additional officers have officially been charged. Ellison is also upgrading the charge against Chauvin to felony second-degree murder.
According to court records obtained by E! News, Keung, Lane and Thao are each facing two felony charges: Aiding and Abetting Second Degree Murder and Aiding and Abetting Second Degree Manslaughter.
The first charge comes with a maximum sentence of no more than 40 years, while the second charge comes with a maximum sentence of no more than 10 years, or payment of a $20,000 fine.
In response to this announcement, attorney Benjamin Crump has shared the Floyd family's reaction via social media.
"This is a bittersweet moment for the family of George Floyd," Crump wrote on Instagram. "We are deeply gratified that Attorney General Keith Ellison took decisive action in this case, arresting and charging all the officers involved in George Floyd's death and upgrading the charge against Derek Chauvin to felony second-degree murder."
On June 1, Floyd's cause of death was revealed in an independent autopsy, citing that his death was "caused by asphyxia due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain."
"The independent examiners found that weight on the back, handcuffs and positioning were contributory factors because they impaired the ability of Mr. Floyd's diaphragm to function," the report, released to E! News from George's family attorney, stated. "From all the evidence, the doctors said it now appears Mr. Floyd died at the scene."
Hours after the independent autopsy was released, The Hennepin County Medical Examiner also shared their results.
In their press release, obtained by E! News on June 1, Floyd's cause of death was "cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint and neck compression."
Additionally, the medical examiner stated that the injury occurred when Floyd "experienced a cardiopulmonary arrest while being restrained by law enforcement officer(s)."
Other significant conditions, as stated by medical examiner, included, "arteriosclerotic and hypertensive heart disease; fentanyl intoxication; recent methamphetamine use." Floyd's manner of death was deemed to be homicide.
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