The Courier-Mail

’Holy s--t, I shot him!’ Cop error sparks riot

Overdose did not kill Floyd, jury told


George Floyd’s death “was absolutely preventabl­e” and there is no evidence a drug overdose caused the black man’s demise, according to a prominent cardiologi­st.

Jonathan Rich, the cardiologi­st who has reviewed the medical records in Floyd’s murder case, told the Hennepin County District Court that different actions could have been taken that would have saved the 46-year-old’s life.

Sacked Minneapoli­s police officer Derek Chauvin is facing murder and manslaught­er charges for his role in Floyd’s death, which occurred during his arrest for allegedly passing a fake $20 note last year.

Chauvin, who is white, was filmed in a video taken by a bystander kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes as the handcuffed Floyd (pictured) comp plained repeatedly “I can’t b breathe”.

Dr Rich told the court he b believed Floyd “would have survived that day” if he had not been restrained in such a forceful and dangerous way.

During his testimony, he also dismissed claims by Chauvin’s defence team that Floyd’s death was due to his consumptio­n of the illegal drugs fentanyl and methamphet­amine and underlying health conditions.

“I can state with a high degree of medical certainty that George Floyd did not die from a primary cardiac event and he did not die from a drug overdose,” Dr Rich said.

Floyd’s brother, Philonise, broke down as he took the stand, rememberin­g his brother as a “big mama’s boy”.

In his emotional testimony, he described the moment that Floyd learned his mother had died. Floyd was talking to her on the phone, but she passed away before he reached her.

“And when we went to the funeral, it’s just – George just sat there at the casket over and over again, he would just say ‘mama, mama’ over and over again,” he said.

In the video of Floyd’s last moments under Chauvin’s knee, he is heard repeatedly crying for his “mama”.

MINNEAPOLI­S: A Minneapoli­s curfew has been imposed after a police officer fatally shot a young black man when she confused her handgun with her taser, fuelling tensions in a US city already on edge because of the George Floyd murder trial.

Police body camera footage shows the officer shouting “Taser! Taser! Taser!” but then instead fires a gun at the victim, 20-year-old father Daunte Wright.

“The officer drew their handgun instead of their taser,” Brooklyn Centre police chief Tim Gannon told a press conference.

Mr Gannon said it was his belief that the officer, who is now on leave pending an investigat­ion, “had the intention to deploy their taser but instead shot Mr Wright with a single bullet”.

“This was an accidental discharge that resulted in the tragic death of Mr Wright,” Mr Gannon said.

“There is nothing I can say to lessen the pain of Mr Wright’s family.”

The killing sparked protests overnight in Brooklyn

Centre and the looting of a shopping mall, and authoritie­s in Minneapoli­s and surroundin­g suburbs, including Brooklyn Centre, announced a curfew from 7pm to 6am local time.

In the bodycam footage, police officers are seen pulling Wright out of his car after stopping him for a traffic violation and discoverin­g he had an outstandin­g warrant.

When officers attempt to handcuff Wright he scuffles with them and gets back in the car. A female police officer shouts “I’ll tase you” and then “Taser! Taser! Taser!” – which is standard police procedure before an officer fires one of the stun guns.

“Holy shit, I shot him,” the officer says as Wright, fatally wounded, drives off. He crashed his car a few blocks away and was pronounced dead at the scene.

How she mistook her gun for a taser was unclear. Mr Gannon said police were trained to place handguns “on our dominant side, and our taser on our weak side”.

President Joe Biden called the killing “tragic”, but warned against any potential violent unrest. “I think we have to wait and see what the investigat­ion shows,” he said.

Brooklyn Centre, where Wright was shot, is a suburb of Minneapoli­s located not far from Hennepin County Government Centre where ex-officer Derek Chauvin is on trial for George’s Floyd’s murder.

 ??  ?? Bodycam footage shows the moment Daunte Wright, 20, was shot; and, below, with his one-year-old son; and police confront protesters. Pictures: AFP
Bodycam footage shows the moment Daunte Wright, 20, was shot; and, below, with his one-year-old son; and police confront protesters. Pictures: AFP
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