Fencing has been erected around a St. Paul courthouse in Minnesota as the city prepares for the trial of three former Minneapolis police officers accused of depriving George Floyd of his civil rights.
The St. Paul Police Department said they are dedicated to doing everything possible to assure the proceedings, which are set to begin later this month, are safe for all involved, saying, “our focus is on protecting people, property, and free speech.”
The three ex-cops — Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng — are set to go to trial on Jan. 20. All three men, along with Derek Chauvin, were charged with failing to render aid to the victim, whose pleas to breathe were ignored. Kueng and Thao were charged with violating Floyd’s right to be free from reasonable seizure and for not intervening or stopping Chauvin when he knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes.
Lane, Thao and Kueng have pleaded not guilty to the aforementioned charges.
As REVOLT previously reported, last month, Chauvin changed his not guilty plea in the civil rights case. The former cop plead guilty to two counts related to Floyd’s death. As part of his plea agreement, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison, which he can serve along with his current 22.5-year sentence from the state trial after being convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter for Floyd’s death.
However, this is not the end of Chauvin’s legal woes. He is also charged with depriving a 14-year-old Black boy of his civil rights during a 2017 incident. He is accused of holding the boy by the throat and hitting him in the head several times with a flashlight. Chauvin also held his knee on the neck and upper back of the young boy — even after he was handcuffed, compliant and lying prone.