On Friday, Attorney General Bill Barr released an update on the investigation into the death of George Floyd, the Minneapolis man who was murdered by a police officer earlier this week.
“The video images of the incident that ended with death of Mr. Floyd, while in custody of Minneapolis police officers, were harrowing to watch and deeply disturbing,” Barr said in a statement. “The state prosecutor has been in the process of determining whether any criminal charges are appropriate under state law.”
“On a separate and parallel track, the Department of Justice, including the FBI, are conducting an independent investigation to determine whether any federal civil rights laws were violated,” Barr added. “Both state and federal officers are working diligently and collaboratively to ensure that any available evidence relevant to these decisions is obtained as quickly as possible.”
Barr finished, “Under our system, charging decisions must be, and will be, based on the law and facts. This process is proceeding quickly. As is the typical practice, the state’s charging decisions will be made first. I am confident justice will be served.”
The comments from the attorney general come around the same time that Derek Chauvin, the ex-officer who killed Floyd, was arrested.
“Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said Derek Chauvin, who was one of four officers fired this week, was charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter, after the office gathered enough evidence to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt,” ABC 13 reported. “Freeman did not have immediate details, but said a criminal complaint would be made available later. The charges come after three days of protests, which had been escalating in violence.”
While speaking at a press conference, Freeman stated, “We have now been able to put together the evidence that we need. Even as late as yesterday afternoon, we did not have all that we needed. This is by far the fastest that we’ve ever charged a police officer.”
President Trump has also spoken out about the killing, revealing that he had directed the FBI and Department of Justice to expedite the investigation into Floyd’s death.
“At my request, the FBI and the Department of Justice are already well into an investigation as to the very sad and tragic death in Minnesota of George Floyd,” President Trump said in a tweet on Wednesday. “I have asked for this investigation to be expedited and greatly appreciate all of the work done by local law enforcement. My heart goes out to George’s family and friends. Justice will be served!”
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