Minneapolis cops used excessive force and targeted racial minorities BEFORE George Floyd death: DOJ

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Minneapolis cops used excessive force and targeted racial minorities BEFORE George Floyd death: DOJ

Minneapolis police used excessive force and targeted racial minorities before George Floyd was murdered, a scathing Department of Justice report has f

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Minneapolis police used excessive force and targeted racial minorities before George Floyd was murdered, a scathing Department of Justice report has found.

Attorney General Merrick Garland held a press conference Friday slamming cops for repeatedly using excessive force, discriminating against black people and mistreating mentally ill individuals.

The two-year long federal investigation ‘found that the systemic problems in M.P.D. made what happened to George Floyd possible.’ 

The probe was launched in April 2021 a day after former officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of murder and manslaughter in the May 2020 killing of Floyd. 

Floyd repeatedly said he couldn’t breathe before going limp as Chauvin knelt on his neck for nine-and-a-half minutes. The killing was recorded by a bystander and sparked months of mass protests as part of a broader national reckoning over racial injustice. 

Scroll down to read the full report… 

Minneapolis police engaged in a pattern of violating constitutional rights and discriminating against black and Native American people following an investigation prompted by the killing of George Floyd

Minneapolis police engaged in a pattern of violating constitutional rights and discriminating against black and Native American people following an investigation prompted by the killing of George Floyd

Minneapolis police engaged in a pattern of violating constitutional rights and discriminating against black and Native American people following an investigation prompted by the killing of George Floyd 

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Friday released a scathing report that documents the systematic abuses and discrimination by the Minneapolis Police Department after a two-year long investigation

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Friday released a scathing report that documents the systematic abuses and discrimination by the Minneapolis Police Department after a two-year long investigation

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Friday released a scathing report that documents the systematic abuses and discrimination by the Minneapolis Police Department after a two-year long investigation 

Garland also said the Minneapolis police repeatedly violated the free speech rights of protesters and journalists. 

The report found that Minneapolis police officers have used excessive force, discriminated against black and Indigenous people, mistreated mentally ill individuals and violated the First Amendment rights of protesters with impunity, the Department of Justice said Friday.

It also found that the police department lacks the systemic safeguards that can prevent or address those abuses, such as effective accountability, rigorous training, robust supervision, and appropriate officer support. 

A similar investigation by the Minnesota Department of Human Rights led to a ‘court-enforceable settlement agreement’ to address the long list of problems identified in the report, with input from residents, officers, city staff and others. Frey and state Human Rights Commissioner Rebecca Lucero signed the agreement in March.

The state investigation, which concluded in April 2022, found ‘significant racial disparities with respect to officers´ use of force, traffic stops, searches, citations, and arrests.’ And it criticized ‘an organizational culture where some officers and supervisors use racist, misogynistic, and disrespectful language with impunity.’

Lucero said the legally binding agreement requires the city and the police department to make ‘transformational changes’ to fix the organizational culture of the force, noting it could serve as a model for how cities, police departments and community members elsewhere work to stop race-based policing.

The federal investigation could prompt a separate but similar court-enforceable agreement, known as a consent decree, that would overlap the settlement with the state. Several police departments in other cities, such as Seattle, operate under consent decrees for alleged civil rights violations.

Floyd, 46, was arrested on suspicion of passing a counterfeit $20 bill for a pack of cigarettes at a corner market. He struggled with police when they tried to put him in a squad car, and though he was already handcuffed, they forced him on the ground. As Chauvin pressed his knee against Floyd´s neck, J. Alexander Kueng held Floyd´s back, Thomas Lane held Floyd´s feet and Tou Thao kept bystanders back.

Chauvin was sentenced to 22 1/2 years for murder. He also pleaded guilty to a federal charge of violating Floyd´s civil rights and was sentenced to 21 years in that case. He is serving the sentences concurrently at the Federal Correctional Institution in Tucson, Arizona.

Kueng, Lane and Thao were convicted of federal charges in February 2022. All three were convicted of depriving Floyd of his right to medical care, and Thao and Kueng also were convicted of failing to intervene to stop Chauvin during the killing. Lane and Kueng have since pleaded guilty to a state count of aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter. In exchange, counts of aiding and abetting murder were dropped.

Lane, who is white, is serving his 2 1/2-year federal sentence at a facility in Colorado. He is serving a three-year state sentence at the same time. Kueng, who is Black, is serving a three-year federal sentence in Ohio, while also serving a 3 1/2-year state sentence.

Thao, who is Hmong American, received a 3 1/2-year federal sentence. In May, the judge in the state case found him guilty of aiding and abetting manslaughter. Thao had said it ‘would be lying’ to have pleaded guilty and he agreed to let the judge decide the case. The judge set sentencing for Aug. 7.

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