Attorney seeks dismissal of charges for former officer in George Floyd’s death

Former Minneapolis police officer Thomas Lane was charged with aiding and abetting murder in the second-degree in the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020. File Photo courtesy of the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office

July 9 (UPI) — An attorney for one of the former officers charged in the killing of George Floyd filed a motion on Wednesday to dismiss charges against him based on transcripts of body-worn camera footage from the scene.

Attorney Earl Gray filed a motion to dismiss charges of aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter in the May 25 killing of Floyd against his client, Thomas Lane, citing a lack of probable cause “based on the entire record.”

Fellow former Minneapolis Police officers J. Alexander Keung and Tou Thao also face charges of aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter, while veteran officer Derek Chauvin, who knelt on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes, faces charges of murder and manslaughter.

Gray cited body camera footage from the scene of Floyd’s arrest in which Lane, who was holding onto Floyd’s legs at the time, twice asked whether Floyd should be rolled onto his side, but Chauvin declined.

Gray said the two body camera videos should be made publicly available and open for viewing, stating that Lane is not visible in footage captured by a bystander that was widely circulated online.

“I think the public should see it,” he said. “That shows the whole picture. If they watch the whole thing, people … couldn’t cherry-pick parts of it.”

Additionally, Gray said Lane’s view of Chauvin’s actions was obstructed by Keung, who was between the two other officers pressing down on Floyd’s back.

“It’s not the case where he’s standing by watching another cop pound on somebody’s head,” said Gray. “This is a case where my client twice — twice — asked if we should turn him over and the answer from [Chauvin] was no.”

An interview with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension in which Lane said he was “going off Officer Chauvin’s experience and what he was saying” was also submitted as part of the filing.

Gray noted that Lane was hired by the Minneapolis Police Department in February 2019 and finished his final training just five days before Floyd’s death.


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