Federal arraignment in July for 3 ex-cops in Floyd’s death

Race in America

FILE – This combination of photos provided by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office in Minnesota on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, shows from left, former Minneapolis police officers J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao. The trial of the three former Minneapolis police officers charged with aiding and abetting in the death of George Floyd will be pushed back to March 2022, in part to allow the publicity over Derek Chauvin’s conviction to cool off, a judge ruled Thursday May 13, 2021. (Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office via AP File)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Three former Minneapolis police officers who are charged with violating George Floyd’ s civil rights are scheduled to be arraigned in federal court in July, with a trial date to be determined.

Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao will be arraigned on civil rights violations on July 14 in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, according to a scheduling order issued Friday. The court initially said the trial would be in August, but updated the schedule hours later to say it was still unscheduled.

FILE – In this April 19, 2021, file image from video, defense attorney Eric Nelson, left, and defendant, former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, speak to Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill after the judge has put the trial into the hands of the jury’ in the trial of Chauvin, in the May 25, 2020, death of George Floyd at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minn. In a ruling May 12, 2021, Judge Cahill finds aggravating factors in death of George Floyd, paving way for tougher sentence for Chauvin.(Court TV via AP, Pool File)

Last week, a federal grand jury indicted the former officers, along with their colleague Derek Chauvin, for allegedly willfully violating Floyd’s rights. Chauvin has already been convicted of state murder and manslaughter charges and is awaiting sentencing. It wasn’t immediately clear why he is not a part of Friday’s scheduling order, but he has not yet made an initial appearance on the federal charges.

Messages left with Chauvin’s attorney and with a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office weren’t immediately returned.

Floyd, 46, died after Chauvin pinned him to the ground with a knee on his neck, even as Floyd, who was handcuffed, repeatedly said he couldn’t breathe. Kueng and Lane also helped restrain Floyd — state prosecutors have said Kueng knelt on Floyd’s back and Lane held down Floyd’s legs. Thao held back bystanders and kept them from intervening during the 9 1/2-minute restraint.

The federal indictment alleges Chauvin violated Floyd’s right to be free from unreasonable seizure and from unreasonable force by a police officer. It charges Thao and Kueng with violating Floyd’s right to be free from unreasonable seizure by not intervening to stop Chauvin as he knelt on Floyd’s neck. All four officers are charged for their failure to provide Floyd with medical care.

Chauvin was also charged in a second indictment, stemming from the use of force and neck restraint of a 14-year-old boy in 2017.

Lane, Kueng and Thao are also charged on state charges of aiding and abetting both murder and manslaughter. They are scheduled to face trial on those charges next March.

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