Death of Black Man: Violence Rocks Minnesota As Blacks Protest Killing By US Police

 

 

There have been violent clashes between police and protesters in the US city of Minneapolis following the death of an unarmed black man in police custody.

Police fired tear gas and protesters threw rocks and sprayed graffiti on police cars.

Video of the death shows George Floyd, 46, groaning “I can’t breathe” as a policeman kneels on his neck.

Four police officers have been fired, with the mayor saying that being black “should not be a death sentence”.

They began in the afternoon on Tuesday, when hundreds of people came to the intersection where the incident had taken place on Monday evening.

Organisers tried to keep the protest peaceful and maintain coronavirus social distancing, with demonstrators chanting “I can’t breathe,” and “It could’ve been me”.

Protester Anita Murray told the Washington Post: “It’s scary to come down here in the middle of the pandemic, but how could I stay away?”

A crowd of hundreds later marched to the 3rd Precinct, where the officers involved in the death are thought to have worked.

Squad cars were sprayed with graffiti and protesters threw stones at the police building. Police fired tear gas, flash grenades and foam projectiles.

One protester told CBS: “It’s real ugly. The police have to understand that this is the climate they have created.”

Another said: “I got on my knees and I put up a peace sign and they tear-gassed me.”

Police said one person had suffered non-life-threatening injuries after being shot away from the protest area but gave no further details.

Mayor Jacob Frey said it was the “right call” to fire the officers.

He said: “Being black in America should not be a death sentence. For five minutes we watched as a white police officer pressed his knee into the neck of a black man. For five minutes. When you hear someone calling for help, you are supposed to help.”

The FBI is investigating the incident and will present its findings to the Minnesota state’s attorney for possible federal charges.

Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar urged a thorough outside investigation, saying: “Justice must be served for this man and his family, justice must be served for our community, justice must be served for our country.”