Four former Minneapolis Police Department officers Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng, Tou Thao and Derek Chauvin are set to be arraigned in federal court on Tuesday. Each of the four officers is being charged with violating George Floyd's civil rights during an arrest on May 25, 2020, in Minneapolis. Video of the arrest that led to Floyd's murder quickly spread around social media and sparked a protest movement that has shaped American society moving forward.
Nearly one year after Floyd's murder, Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Ultimately, Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill sentenced him to 22.5 years in prison. Meanwhile, Lane, Kueng and Thao await trial for aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter. They were originally scheduled to stand trial for their criminal charges in August, but their trial was moved to early 2022.
While dealing with their criminal charges, a federal grand jury indicted Thao, Chauvin, Kueng and Lane on civil rights charges. As previously reported, the indictment alleges the four officers "willfully failed to aid Floyd" as he called out for medical attention.
"Chauvin held his left knee across George Floyd's neck, and his right knee on Floyd's back and arm, as George Floyd lay on the ground, handcuffed and unresisting, and kept his knees on Floyd's neck and body even after Floyd became unresponsive," an excerpt from the indictment reads.
"This offense resulted in bodily injury to, and the death of George Floyd."
The civil rights charges that Chauvin is facing do not solely pertain to the murder of George Floyd. He is also accused of violating the civil rights of a 14-year-old boy during a violent arrest in 2017. Chauvin allegedly struck the boy in the head and then kneeled on him for 17 minutes as he called for help. Fortunately, the young man did survive the incident, but he did require further medical attention.