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Ex-Minneapolis Cops in George Floyd Case Plan to Testify

Federal prosecutors rested their case Monday against three former Minneapolis police officers charged with violating George Floyd’s civil rights, setting the stage for two of the officers to take the stand in their defense, the Associated Press reports. The prosecution rested its case after nearly three weeks of testimony from doctors, police officers and bystanders, including the teenager who recorded widely seen video that showed officer Derek Chauvin pressing his knee onto Floyd’s neck for 9 1/2 minutes while the 46-year-old Black man was handcuffed, facedown and pleading for air. Ex-officers J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao are charged with violating Floyd’s constitutional rights while acting under government authority. Kueng knelt on Floyd’s back and Lane held down his legs while Thao kept bystanders back. All three are accused of depriving Floyd of medical care. Kueng and Thao are also accused of failing to intervene to stop the May 25, 2020, killing, which triggered protests worldwide and a reexamination of racism and policing. ;

Prosecutors allege that the officers’ actions resulted in Floyd’s death. Thao and Kueng told the judge that they plan to testify. Lane's plans were not decided. Earlier Monday, a use-of-force expert testified that the officers should have intervened. The testimony from Tim Longo, the police chief at the University of Virginia at Charlottesville, was peppered with emphatic objections, numerous warnings from the judge that the information was repetitive, and combative cross-examination. Gray, Lane’s attorney, challenged Longo on whether he was asserting that “my client, a four-day veteran” should have thrown Chauvin off Floyd. Both Kueng and Lane were just a few days into their jobs as full-fledged officers. “I think someone should have done something, yes,” Longo replied. Defense arguments have repeatedly focused on the condition termed "excited delirium," and the training of police to respond to it, suggesting the officers were following procedure about restraining someone they thought was experiencing such a syndrome, The Guardian reports.


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