Protests Erupt Over George Floyd Death in Police Custody In Minneapolis and LA

Protestors want murder charges brought against the four officers.

One person is dead as Minneapolis was met with a second night of protests (May 27) in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd

While many of the protesters were peaceful, others set fires and looted stores.

Mayor Jacob Frey pleaded for peace from angry citizens as dozens of businesses and properties were broken into. “Please, please, Minneapolis,” he told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. “We cannot let tragedy beget more tragedy. The activity around Lake and Hiawatha is now unsafe. Please, help us keep the peace. 

“Yes, we’re reeling,” he said.” “I understand the anger and pain, and we need the public’s help in keeping the peace tonight. We need that in order to get through this together. I love our city. I know our residents do too, and we need to be doing everything possible to not have one tragedy beget more.”

Frey had earlier called for criminal charges against Derek Chauvin, the police officer seen on video pinning Floyd under his knee until he lost consciousness and died. Chauvin, along with officers Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J Alexander Kueng, were all fired Wednesday (May 28).  

Chauvin, 44,  was a 19-year veteran of the Minneapolis police force and had been the subject of at least a dozen complaints, but was never disciplined, NBC News reported. Thao and another officer, Robert Thunder, were reportedly sued in 2017 for excessive use of force. That case was settled for $25,000, according to the Star-Tribune. Kueng, and Lane have had no reported disciplinary actions taken against them prior to Floyd’s death

At least five people were wounded in gunfire,’ the Star-Tribune reported. There was one fatality when a pawn shop owner shot dead a man he thought was breaking into his business. He was booked in the Hennepin County Jail on suspicion of murder. 

The National Guard was called into the area where demonstrators surrounded a police precinct. 

Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar called for peace in a Twitter post, but also made clear that she understood the anger over Floyd’s death.

Meanwhile, Minnesota’s attorney general Keith Ellison called for police restraint, while appealing for an end to the unrest.

As the social unrest continued in several parts of Minneapolis, demonstrators marched to the home of Hennepin County prosecutor Mike Freeman, who would make a decision on any criminal charges as well as the home of Chauvin, WCCO said. At Chauvin’s home, red paint was poured onto his driveway, while the word “killer” was painted on his garage door, the Star-Tribune reported.

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, demonstrators blocked traffic on the 101 Freeway in protest of Floyd's death, reports NBC Los Angeles.

According to CNN, Floyd moved from Houston to Minneapolis for a better life and had worked security at a restaurant.  His brother, Philonise Floyd called him a “gentle giant. 

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