Family members of George Floyd knelt in front of the courthouse where the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin is taking place for 8 minutes and 46 seconds to remind them of how their loved one died “According to TOPNEWS.
Chauvin is being tried for murder after a former Minneapolis police officer knocked down Floyd’s neck with his knee during his arrest last May and held him for 8 minutes – ignoring the man’s words that he could not breathe. Chauvin himself pleaded not guilty. His trial started today, March 29. In light of the beginning of the trial, Floyd’s family members, along with the Reverend Al Sharpton and attorney Benjamin Crump, decided to kneel in front of the courthouse before going inside. Sharpton explained that the family decided to kneel for 8 minutes and 46 seconds to remind the world of how long Chauvin kept his knee on Floyd’s neck. According to CNN, although that amount of time was stated in the initial complaint, the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office said it was actually 7 minutes and 46 seconds.
Speaking at a press conference today, Sharpton said, “We kneel for 8 minutes and 46 seconds and want you to think about why Chauvin didn’t remove his knee [in those 8 minutes] in the meantime. Sharpton noted that the Floyd family is preparing to hear how the Chauvin defense team will try to discredit the deceased during the trial. He said that the man’s family “will have to go through very painful and turbulent weeks,” adding: “Not only did they have to lose <...> a loved one, now they will have to relive what happened again and again in front of the whole world.” Floyd’s brother, Philonis Floyd, thanked the protesters who stood up for his brother and said he “hoped” that Chauvin will be convicted. Ben Crump, a lawyer for the Floyd family, called the Chauvin trial a “referendum” that will show “whether we are going to keep two justice systems in the United States – one for white America and one for black.” “Today’s goal is equal justice for everyone in the United States of America.”