Minnesota files civil rights charge vs police in Floyd death
The state of Minnesota filed a human rights complaint Tuesday against the Minneapolis Police Department in the death of George Floyd who died after an officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for minutes, even after he stopped moving, AP reports.
Gov. Tim Walz and the Minnesota Department of Human Rights announced the filing at a news conference Tuesday afternoon.
Widely seen bystander video showing Floyd’s death has sparked sometimes violent protests around the world. The officer, Derek Chauvin, has been fired and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Three other officers involved were fired but have not been charged.
“We know that deeply seated issues exist,” the governor said. “I know it because we saw the casual nature of the erasing of George Floyd’s life and humanity. We also saw the reaction of the community. They expected nothing to happen, because nothing happened so many times before.”
Walz said the investigation into the police department’s policies, procedures and practices over the past 10 years will determine if the force has engaged in systemic discrimination toward people of color, and work out how to stop it. State Human Rights Commissioner Rebecca Lucero will lead the investigation.
Lucero’s department will seek an agreement from Minneapolis city leaders and the police department to immediately implement interim measures, followed by long-term measures to address systemic discrimination.
The FBI is also investigating whether police willfully deprived Floyd of his civil rights.