Derek Chauvin Had Knee on George Floyd for One Minute Less Than Reported: Prosecutors

June 18, 2020 Updated: June 18, 2020

Prosecutors overseeing the George Floyd case said that Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin had his knee on Floyd’s neck for about one minute less than what has been claimed.

On Wednesday, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman’s office said that his knee was on Floyd’s neck for 7 minutes and 46 seconds, instead of 8 minutes and 46 seconds that has become a rallying cry for many Black Lives Matters protesters and activists.

“These kinds of technical matters can be handled in future amendments to the criminal complaint if other reasons make it necessary to amend the complaint between now and any trials,” Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman’s office said in a statement. The office’s statement added that “the one minute error made no difference in the decision to charge nor in the continuing legal hearings.”

The publicized 8:46 is a math error in complaints signed by Matthew Frank, the assistant attorney general under Keith Ellison, who was tapped to head the prosecution in the case against Chauvin and three other officers, according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

George Floyd
George Floyd in a file photograph. (Christopher Harris via AP)

Earlier in June and in late May, Black Lives Matter protesters across the United States staged “die-ins” for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. In the District of Columbia, Democratic lawmakers led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) took a knee in silence for nearly nine minutes, and mourners at a memorial for Floyd in Minneapolis stood in silence for 8 minutes and 46 seconds.

The Rev. Al Sharpton, an MSNBC host, asked people who attended the Minneapolis memorial to “think about what George was going through, laying there for those eight minutes, begging for his life.”

The three other officers, J. Kueng, Thomas Lane, and Tou Thao, were charged with aiding and abetting both second-degree murder and manslaughter. Like Chauvin, the three other officers were fired from the police department.

police officers who arrested george floyd
From left, Derek Chauvin, J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao. (Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

State police conduct investigators in Minnesota are investigating the actions of the four officers charged in connection to the case. The four are still licensed as Minnesota peace officers, according to the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) in a court filing, reported the Star-Tribune.

The POST Board has since asked a court for copies of the criminal complaints against Chauvin, Thao, Keung, and Lane.

“The video is troubling and disturbing and it is the Board’s position that sanctity of life must be the guiding principle for all law enforcement officers,” the statement said, referring to the now-viral video of Floyd’s neck being pinned by Chauvin.