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Minneapolis Police Chief: “This Was Murder”

"On what grounds could you possibly claim that you are doing something within your professional responsibility by keeping your knee on the neck of a person who is utterly unconscious for over 9 minutes."

Community activists light candles at a memorial near the site where George Floyd died at the hands of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin on March 28, 2021 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

 

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The Minneapolis police chief, Medaria Arradondo, told the Derek Chauvin murder trial on Monday that Derek Chauvin’s decision to kneel on George Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes violated Police Department policy.

“That action is not de-escalation,” Arradondo said in Hennepin County Court Monday. “I absolutely agree that it violates our policy. That is not part of our policy, that is not what we teach, and that shouldn’t be condoned.”

"This was murder — it wasn't a lack of training," Arradondo said, adding that that was why he "took swift action" and fired the officers involved.

"Once Mr. Floyd had stopped resisting, and certainly once he was in distress and trying to verbalize that, that should have stopped," Arradondo said.

“There's an initial reasonableness in trying to just get him under control in the first few seconds. But once there was no longer any resistance, and clearly when Mr. Floyd was no longer responsive and even motionless, to continue to apply that level of force to a person proned out, handcuffed behind their back, that in no way, shape or form is anything that is by policy. It is not part of our training, and it is certainly not part of our ethics or values," he added to defend his statements.

"There are a lot of different places that a skilled attorney could try to drive a wedge of reasonable doubt so a super sympathetic jury maybe could try to find some room there to try to wiggle out of a conviction," said Ryan Grim.

"But I just don't see that happening in this case. I feel like white America and Police Departments across the country have found Dereck Chauvin as somebody they are willing to say ‘this is beyond the pail’ to," he added.

"On what grounds could you possibly claim that you are doing something within your professional responsibility by keeping your knee on the neck of a person who is utterly unconscious for over nine minutes?" Grim Questioned.

Ana Kasparian agreed, saying "every once in a while you will see the video so gut wrenching that I can't imagine Chauvin not being convicted. "

"The length of that footage, the length of time he had the knee on his neck - and also just the way the other officers treated it as if it was just another day - it shows that not only what Derek Chauvin did was an issue but there is a systemic issue as well," she added.

Arradondo also said that officers didn’t have to arrest Floyd at all since his crime, using a counterfeit $20 bill, wasn’t a violent felony.

“There’s been a shift over the years to make sure that the individuals who are going to jail are those who, from a public safety standpoint, need to be ... in that facility. If we can properly identify that it’s not a violent situation, we can always charge via a complaint and other things.”

"It was important for the police chief to mention that arresting someone for using a counterfeit bill was nonsense. That's also not the way Derek Chauvin to handle the situation," concluded Kasparian.

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