In this Monday, May 25, 2020, frame from video provided by Darnella Frazier, a Minneapolis officer kneels on the neck of a handcuffed man who was pleading that he could not breathe in Minneapolis. Four Minneapolis officers involved in the arrest of a George Floyd who died in police custody were fired Tuesday.(Darnella Frazier via AP)

Officer who knelt on George Floyd's neck before his death is now in custody


MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – The Minneapolis police officer seen kneeling on George Floyd’s neck before his death on Monday has been taken into custody, the Star Tribune and WCCO report.

Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington told reporters Friday that former officer Derek Chauvin was placed in custody by the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

It’s unclear at this time what charges Chauvin may be facing.

Harrington’s announcement came just minutes after he finished a press conference over the case with Minnesota Governor Tim Walz. During that briefing, he called Floyd’s death a murder.

“I will call it a murder, that’s what it looked like to me,” said Harrington. “I don’t want to prejudice this from a criminal perspective. I’m just calling it what I see it.”

Chauvin is one of four officers who have been fired from the Minneapolis Police Department for their alleged role in Floyd’s death.

Floyd was arrested Monday after a grocery store employee called the police to report someone trying to pass a counterfeit bill. A 10-minute video of Floyd’s arrest soon circulated online.

In the video shot by a bystander, an officer identified as Chauvin is seen pressing his knee on Floyd’s neck while the man gasps for air with his face against the pavement. Floyd then lost consciousness and was transported to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Protests have popped up across the United States since Floyd’s death, with people calling for justice for the 36-year-old man.

For the past three nights, protesters have grown increasingly violent. And on Thursday, demonstrators torched one of the city’s police stations that the department had abandoned.