Bail was set at $1 million Thursday for three of the four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the killing of George Floyd.
J Alexander Kueng, Thomas K. Lane and Tou Thao made their first appearances before the same judge in Hennepin County District Court. All three fired Minneapolis police officers face several charges in the killing of Floyd during an arrest on Memorial Day.
Another former colleague, Derek Chauvin, seen pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck during the incident, was charged last week by the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
First appearances are typically procedural. But the hearing quickly turned contentious, with Lane’s attorney, Earl Gray, arguing that the cases against the officers are weak and that they did nothing wrong. Gray said Lane twice asked if they should roll Floyd on side but that Chauvin said no. “What was he supposed to do… go up to Mr. Chauvin, grab him and throw him off?” Gray said.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison on Wednesday charged Kueng, 26, of Plymouth; Lane, 37, of St. Paul; and Thao, 34, of Coon Rapids with one count each of aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.
Hennepin County District Court Judge Paul Scoggin set each of their bails at $1 million without conditions or $750,000 with conditions, which include surrendering any guns they have.
Ellison, who is now leading the investigation and prosecution, filed a count of second-degree unintentional murder Wednesday against Chauvin.
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SOURCE: Minnesota Star Tribune, Chao Xiong