On Monday (April 26), a posthumous pardon request was submitted to Texas officials on behalf of George Floyd for a 2004 drug arrest that was conducted by a now-indicted former Houston cop whose case history has come under investigation.
According to ABC News, back in 2004, Floyd was arrested by former police officer Gerald Goines in Houston for allegedly selling $10 worth of crack in a police sting. He later pleaded guilty to a drug charge and was sentenced to 10 months in jail. Goines is now facing multiple charges, including two counts of felony murder, for his involvement in a deadly 2019 drug raid in which Dennis Tuttle and his wife, Rhogena Nicholas, were killed.
According to prosecutors, Goines lied to acquire the search warrant for the couple’s home. He claimed that an informant had purchased heroin from there. He later switched his story and said that there was no informant and he bought the drugs himself.
Over 160 drug convictions that Goines has been involved with have been dismissed by prosecutors. A dozen former and current cops who were tied to the narcotics unit alongside Goines have been indicted following the fatal shooting of Tuttle and his wife.
Allison Mathis, who works with the Harris County Public Defender’s Office, said Goines lied about an informant in Floyd’s case as well and said that “no one bothered to question the word of a veteran cop against that of a previously-convicted Black man.” She wrote in her office's posthumous pardon that she believes Floyd only pleaded guilty to the drug charge to avoid a 25-year sentence due to his past criminal history.
A pardon “wouldn’t erase the memory, personal or institutional, of this thing that happened to him, or the things that would happen to him later... It would show that the state of Texas is interested in fundamental fairness, in admitting its mistakes, and in working to increase the accountability for police officers who break our trust and their oaths, and harm our people rather than serve them,” Mathis said.
If a majority of the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles approves the pardon request, it would then move to Gov. Greg Abbott, who would give the final approval.