Trial begins for former officers fired over George Floyd’s murder

The three were on duty with Derek Chauvin who kneeled on his neck for nearly 10 minutes

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (KLKN) – The federal trial starts today for three former police officers on duty with Derek Chauvin as he pinned George Floyd’s neck to the ground.

J. Kueng, Thomas Lane, and Tou Thao are charged with depriving Floyd of his civil rights while acting under government authority by failing to provide him with medical care.  Kueng and Thao are additionally charged for failing to stop Chauvin.  Chauvin was convicted of murder and manslaughter last year.

Kueng and Lane were the first officers to respond to the incident with Floyd, after a report that he had tried to use a counterfeit $20 bill.  After Chauvin and Thao arrived, Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck as Kueng and Lane helped hold him down.  Thao’s job was to keep bystanders away from the scene.  Floyd died on May 25, 2020, after 9 1/2 minutes of Chauvin kneeling on his neck.

Kueng and Lane were rookies, and had only been full-fledged officers for a few days before this took place.  It has been stated that Kueng mentioned that he could not find a pulse, and Lane asked twice if they should roll Floyd on his side.  Kueng, Lane, and Thao were all fired the day after Floyd was killed.

Jurors for this federal trial were chosen last Thursday.  The three former officers will face further charges for aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter this June in a separate state trial.

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