Law & the Courts

Chauvin, Three Fellow Officers Indicted on Federal Civil Rights Charges in Floyd Case

Derek Chauvin is introduced to potential jurors during his trial in Minneapolis, Minn., March 15, 2021 in this courtroom sketch. (Jane Rosenberg/Reuters)

A federal grand jury indicted four former officers on civil rights charges in the death of Minneapolis resident George Floyd, according to an indictment released on Friday.

Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng, and Tou Thao were indicted together for violating Floyd’s right to freedom from unreasonable seizure and excessive force, and failure to provide medical care to Floyd during his arrest.

Chauvin was convicted of murder last month, a year after video emerged of Chauvin pinning Floyd to the ground during his arrest until after he lost consciousness. The three other officers also took part in Floyd’s arrest.

Lane and Kueng were both rookies, with Lane only four days on the job when he took part in the arrest. Chauvin, their training officer, pressed down on Floyd’s neck while the two rookies held him down.

Lane, Kueng, and Thao appeared via videoconference for the unveiling of the indictments in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis. Those three are currently free on bond and are awaiting a separate state trial in August.

The video of Floyd’s arrest in May 2020 sparked riots in Minneapolis that spread to cities across the U.S., along with protests against racism and police brutality that continued throughout the summer.

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.


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