‘Stop yelling,’ officer told gasping George Floyd

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‘Stop yelling,’ officer told gasping George Floyd


George Floyd

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Twitter/Ruth Richardson

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George Floyd repeatedly told the police officers who detained him that he could not breathe

The US police officer accused of George Floyd’s murder told him to stop talking as he repeatedly gasped under the man’s knee, according to court documents.

The unarmed black man cried out for his late mother and children as he said the Minneapolis policeman would kill him, transcripts from body-cam footage show.

They were disclosed in court by lawyers for one of the four officers involved.

The documents offer the clearest picture yet of Mr Floyd’s last moments. His death in May sparked global uproar.

All four officers involved in taking Mr Floyd into custody were fired and arrested. Derek Chauvin, who knelt on his neck, faces several charges including second-degree murder, while the other three – Thomas Lane, J Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao – are charged with aiding and abetting murder.

The transcripts were made public as Mr Lane’s lawyers asked for the case against him to be dismissed.

What do the transcripts show?

Transcripts of footage recorded by body cameras fitted to Mr Lane and Mr Kueng show Mr Floyd said more than 20 times he could not breathe as he was restrained by the officers in a Minneapolis street.

They confronted him outside a convenience store where he was suspected of having used a forged $20 note to buy cigarettes.

At one point, a handcuffed Mr Floyd gasps while lying on the road next to the police car that he cannot breathe, adding: “You’re going to kill me, man.”

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Reuters

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Derek Chauvin is due to appear in court in Minneapolis on Monday

Mr Chauvin, who is shown in bystander footage appearing to kneel on Mr Floyd’s neck for nearly eight minutes, replies: “Then stop talking, stop yelling.

“It takes heck of a lot of oxygen to talk.”

The transcripts show Mr Floyd appears co-operative at the beginning of the arrest, repeatedly apologising to the officers after they approach his parked car.

At one point, he tells the police who are demanding to see his hands: “Man, I got, I got shot the same way, Mr Officer, before.” It is not clear what he is referring to.

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Mr Lane says: “Why’s he getting all squirrelly and not showing us his hands and just being all weird like that?”

Mr Floyd becomes agitated as the officers try to get him into the back of their car, repeatedly pleading that he is claustrophobic.

Mr Lane asks if he is “on something”. Mr Floyd replies: “I’m scared, man.”

Once Mr Floyd is restrained on the ground, he cries out a dozen times: “Mama.”

He says: “Can’t believe this, man. Mom, love you. Love you.

“Tell my kids love them. I’m dead.”

As he continues to plead he can’t breathe, at one point Mr Lane asks Mr Chauvin: “Should we roll him on his side?”

The officer responds: “No, he’s staying put where we got him.”

Mr Chauvin’s lawyers have not commented on the documents since they were made public.


More on the US protests

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US protests timeline

Tributes to George Floyd at a makeshift memorial
Image captionTributes to George Floyd at a makeshift memorial

Image copyright byGetty Images

George Floyd dies after being arrested by police outside a shop in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Footage shows a white officer, Derek Chauvin, kneeling on Mr Floyd’s neck for several minutes while he is pinned to the floor. Mr Floyd is heard repeatedly saying “I can’t breathe”. He is pronounced dead later in hospital.

Demonstrators in Minneapolis
Image captionDemonstrators in Minneapolis

Image copyright byAFP

Four officers involved in the arrest of George Floyd are fired. Protests begin as the video of the arrest is shared widely on social media. Hundreds of demonstrators take to the streets of Minneapolis and vandalise police cars and the police station with graffiti.

Protesters lie on the streets in Portland, Oregon
Image captionProtesters lie on the streets in Portland, Oregon

Image copyright byReuters

Protests spread to other cities including Memphis and Los Angeles. In some places, like Portland, Oregon, protesters lie in the road, chanting “I can’t breathe”. Demonstrators again gather around the police station in Minneapolis where the officers involved in George Floyd’s arrest were based and set fire to it. The building is evacuated and police retreat.

President Trump tweets about the unrest
Image captionPresident Trump tweets about the unrest

Image copyright byReuters

President Trump blames the violence on a lack of leadership in Minneapolis and threatens to send in the National Guard in a tweet.  He follows it up in a second tweet with a warning “when the looting starts, the shooting starts”. The second tweet is hidden by Twitter for “glorifying violence”.

Members of a CNN crew are arrested at a protest
Image captionMembers of a CNN crew are arrested at a protest

Image copyright byReuters

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