Just as the criminal trial for former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin begins, city officials have agreed to pay $27 million to the family of George Floyd.
The payment is in settlement of a civil lawsuit, reported the Star Tribune of Minneapolis.
Lawyers for the family described it as the “largest pre-trial settlement in a civil rights wrongful death case in U.S. history.”
Attorney Benjamin Crump said in a statement: “George Floyd’s horrific death, witnessed by millions of people around the world, unleashed a deep longing and undeniable demand for justice and change. That the largest pre-trial settlement in a wrongful death case ever would be for the life of a black man sends a powerful message that black lives do matter and police brutality against people of color must end.”
The payoff was adopted by city council members Friday, and Mayor Jacob Frey’s office has indicated he will approve it.
“This part of our tragic journey to justice for my brother George is resolved,” said Bridgett Floyd. “Our family suffered an irreplaceable loss May 25 when George’s life was senselessly taken by a Minneapolis police officer.”
The Star Tribune reported $500,000 is to be used for the benefit of the community in the neighborhood where George Floyd died.
Andrea Jenkins, a member of the council, told the paper: “This is a deeply traumatic event that, unfortunately, is a part of too many black and brown families’ realities. There is no amount of money that can replace a brother, a son, a nephew, a father, a loved one but what we can do is continue to work towards justice and equity and equality in the city of Minneapolis and that’s what I commit to do.”
The case alleged police acted with “reckless disregard” for Floyd’s civil rights.
On Thursday, the judge in the case against Chauvin added a charge of third-degree murder, increasing the likelihood of a conviction.
Prosecutors pushed for that option, contends Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, because body-cam video and a toxicology report counter the narrative that media and activists derived from the horrific viral video of Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck.
Long before a jury could consider the evidence, Floyd’s death was turned into a race issue, sparking deadly and costly protests and rioting along with monumental societal changes.
Now, “mob justice,” Carlson said on his show Wednesday, is threatening Chauvin’s right to a fair trial, as activists stare down National Guard troops outside the courthouse and shut down streets, demanding “justice by any means necessary.”
“In other words, if you vote to acquit Derek Chauvin, the mob is saying, the community will burn because we will burn it,” Carlson said. “It’s like something from Mississippi in the 1920s. But where’s the Justice Department? Where’s the so-called Civil Rights Division to protect the civil rights of Derek Chauvin? Yes, even accused cops have the right to a fair trial. Your civil rights are not suspended when you’re accused. This is America.”
A USA Today/Ipsos poll published last week showed only 36% of Americans believe Floyd was murdered.
The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office found Floyd suffered from heart disease and had three times the lethal dose of fentanyl in his system as well as methamphetamine.
While Floyd’s lawyer admits the report is correct, he insists Floyd was killed “by racism,” Carlson noted.
Carlson noted Floyd’s death has transformed the nation.
“George Floyd, we were told, wasn’t simply an individual. He was every African-American in this country. Derek Chauvin wasn’t just a cop. He was the physical embodiment of America’s institutions. We were told that when Chauvin murdered George Floyd, he was doing to one man what our country has done to all African- Americans. Many people told us this, including Joe Biden,” he said.
Police were trying to detain Floyd for allegedly passing a counterfeit $20 bill at a nearby store.
Carlson noted Floyd might have told officers “I can’t breathe” because one of the primary symptoms of a fentanyl overdose is “slowed or stopped breathing,” leading to “unconsciousness” and death.
See Carlson’s segment on the Chauvin case:
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This article was originally published by the WND News Center.