In order to settle a wrongful death lawsuit, the city of Minneapolis agreed Friday to pay $27 million to the family of George Floyd.
On May 25, 2020, Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was recorded on video kneeling against George Floyd’s neck for at least eight minutes despite the fact that Floyd had already been handcuffed and remained motionless for the majority of that time. Floyd lost consciousness and died in police custody as many onlookers begged the officers to stop killing him.
Floyd’s nose was also bleeding profusely for several minutes as Officer Chauvin continued to kneel across the back of his neck. Officers Tou Thao, Thomas Lane, and J. Alexander Kueng were recorded on video standing beside Chauvin while ignoring the witnesses who repeatedly begged for Floyd’s life.
The next day, all four officers were terminated from the Minneapolis Police Department. On May 29, 2020, Chauvin was arrested and charged with third degree murder and second degree manslaughter. Opening statements at his trial are scheduled for later this month.
Thou, Lane, and Kueng have been charged with aiding and abetting both second degree murder and manslaughter. They are expected to go to trial in August.
In July 2020, the family of George Floyd filed a federal civil rights lawsuit accusing the four officers of causing Floyd’s wrongful death. On Friday, the city of Minneapolis agreed to pay $27 million to Floyd’s family in order to settle the suit against the police department and the city.
“I thank the state of Minnesota for getting this settlement taken care of,” Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, told CNN. “But even though my brother is not here, he’s here with me in my heart. Because if I could get him back, I would give all of this back.
“I know that he’s with us, and he’s standing up, right now, knowing that we have the opportunity to be able to fund low-income, African American communities.”
“The settlement is not just historic because of the $27 million paid out but for the impact on social justice policy reforms and police reforms,” said Ben Crump, Floyd’s family attorney. “Because the financial compensation most directly impacts George Floyd, and his family, the future of his family. But it is the policy reforms that affect all of us.”
“No amount of money can ever address the intense pain or trauma caused by this death to George Floyd’s family or to the people of our city,” stated Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender. “Minneapolis has been fundamentally changed by this time of racial reckoning, and this city council is united in working together with our community and the Floyd family to equitably reshape our city of Minneapolis.”