The Justice Department has completed its investigation into the Minneapolis Police Department, which began after the death of George Floyd.
On Friday (June 16), The Associated Press reported that the federal department revealed its findings. Through the probe, the organization alleged that members of the MPD have systematically discriminated against Black and Native American people for years. They also claim that law enforcement has frequently violated constitutional rights.
“We observed many MPD officers who did their difficult work with professionalism, courage, and respect,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a Minneapolis news conference. “But the patterns and practices we observed made what happened to George Floyd possible.”
According to Garland, police also routinely ignored the safety of individuals in their custody. He alleged several situations in which people being detained informed officers that they could not breathe. Police reportedly replied with “a version of ‘You can breathe. You’re talking right now.'”
Such actions are what led to the death of Floyd in 2020. As REVOLT previously mentioned, authorities detained the 46-year-old on suspicion of attempting to use a “fake” bill at a local store. Floyd was pinned face down on the ground during his arrest by then-cop Derek Chauvin and his fellow officers. Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes despite the Black father’s cries that he couldn’t breathe. Floyd died as a result of the incident. All officers involved, including Chauvin, were eventually charged and convicted for their roles in his passing.
As a result of the investigation, Minneapolis and its police department have agreed to a federal consent decree. With the deal, reforms are required to be overseen by an independent monitor and approved by a federal judge, per AP News. “We understand that change is non-negotiable,” Mayor Jacob Frey said. “Progress can be painful, and the obstacles can be great. But we haven’t let up in the three years since the murder of George Floyd.”
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