Floyd died of cardiopulmonary arrest, tested positive for COVID-19, autopsy shows

Protests, which have been largely peaceful, have continued this week.

June 3, 2020, 10:50 PM

The death of George Floyd, a black man who died on Memorial Day after he was pinned down by a white Minnesota police officer, has sparked outrage and protests in Minneapolis and across the United States.

Second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter charges have been filed against Derek Chauvin, the officer who prosecutors say held his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes. Three other officers have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting manslaughter.

Chauvin and the other three officers at the scene, Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J Alexander Kueng, have been fired. The Department of Justice is investigating.

PHOTO: A protester and an officer shake hands in the middle of a standoff during a rally calling for justice over the death of George Floyd Tuesday, June 2, 2020, in New York. Floyd died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on May 25.
A protester and a police officer shake hands in the middle of a standoff during a solidarity rally calling for justice over the death of George Floyd Tuesday, June 2, 2020, in New York. Floyd died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on May 25.
Wong Maye-e/AP

Wednesday's biggest developments:

  • All 4 officers now facing charges
  • At least 9,300 people arrested across the country
  • Ferguson, Missouri, the site of the shooting of Michael Brown, elects first African American mayor
  • Minnesota Department of Human Rights to investigate police department
  • Here is how the news unfolded on Wednesday. All times Eastern.

    9:39 p.m.: LA announces police reforms

    Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and the city's police commission board announced new reforms for the Los Angeles Police Department.

    The department's budget won't be raised and they will begin to find $150 million in cuts, he announced.

    The decision comes amid calls from protesters to defund the police -- a popular chant outside City Hall in recent days.

    The $150 million in policing cuts will come from a total shift of $250 million from the proposed budget to instead be reallocated to minority communities, he said.

    "Today President [Barack] Obama challenged mayors to sign a pledge to recognize that there are things that are still not right. I was proud to be one of the first mayors in America to sign that pledge," Garcetti said at a press conference. "Tonight I want to announce that we aren’t just putting the work of moving forward on the shoulders of activists or of African Americans or police officers. It’s on those of us who you’ve elected."

    "Our city identified $250 million in cuts so we can invest in jobs, in health, in education and in healing and those dollars need to be focused on our black community here in Los Angeles," he added.

    The department will also be instructed to invest in more implicit bias training, youth programs and oversight programs, according to the mayor.

    8:33 p.m.: Floyd died of cardiopulmonary arrest; tested positive for COVID-19

    The Hennepin Medical Examiner's office released the full 20-page autopsy of George Floyd and revealed that he had previously tested positive for COVID-19, but was likely asymptomatic when he died in late May.

    The report said he initially tested positive for COVID-19 back on April 3. A post mortem nasal test was performed on Floyd on May 26, one day after his death, and it came back positive for 2019-nCoV RNA.

    "Since PCR positivity for 2019-nCoV RNA can persist for weeks after the onset and resolution of clinical disease, the autopsy result most likely reflects asymptomatic but persistent PCR positivity from previous infection," the report said.

    Floyd's death, first released earlier this week, was listed as "cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression" with hypertensive heart disease, fentanyl intoxication and methamphetamine listed as additional conditions.

    7:58 p.m.: All officers involved in Floyd’s death in custody

    Alexander Kueng, Tou Thao and Thomas Lane, the former Minneapolis cops who were charged today in connection with George Floyd’s murder, have been arrested and booked into Hennepin County Jail.

    The authorities released mugshots of the former officers later in the evening.

    PHOTO: Minneapolis Police officers Tou Thau, Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane.
    Former Minneapolis Police officers Tou Thau, Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane.
    Hennepin County Sheriff's Office

    Lane, Thao and Kueng were slated to have a court appearance Thursday afternoon, according to Hennepin County Jail records.

    Former officer Dereck Chauvin has been in custody since last week after he was charged with murder and manslaughter charges.

    6:30 p.m.: Park Police officers put on admin duty following attack on Australian reporters

    The U.S. Park Police department tweeted out a statement concerning an incident where officers were seen hitting and harassing members of the Australian press.

    The incident took place Monday night when Attorney General William Barr ordered Lafayette Park cleared out of peaceful protesters prior to President Donald Trump's photo op at St. John's Church. Channel 7 News reporter Amelia Brace was pushed out of the way, while her cameraman was punched by an officer and hit with his shield and nightstick.

    "As is consistent with our established practices and procedures, two U.S. Park Police officers have been assigned to administrative duties, while an investigation takes place," U.S. Park Police acting Chief Gregory T. Monahan said in a statement.

    6:13 p.m.: DC mayor heckled by protesters after she doesn't take knee

    Washington, D.C., Muriel Bowser made an appearance at the protests outside of the White House.

    The mayor did not take a knee or chant with the crowd and they responded with cursing and shouts. Bowser stressed that she wants people to continue to peacefully protest.

    "We want people to peacefully protest. Nobody wants anybody who is bent on destruction," she told ABC News. "People have grievances that must be heard."

    Asked to evaluate the president's response so far, Bowser said, "I think to insinuate, or actually bring the United States military into an American city, is unconscionable and may be illegal."

    It was a hot, muggy day in Washington with temperatures hitting a high in the 90s. The crowd was large, but smaller than it had been yesterday.

    5:20 p.m.: St. John's bishop says Trump should be replaced

    Bishop Mariann Edgar Budde, of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, continued to express her frustration with President Donald Trump's photo op outside the damaged St. John's Episcopal Church Monday evening.

    Speaking outside the church, Budde told ABC News she is done trying to talk to the president.

    "We need to replace President Trump. We need leadership that will lead us in ways that this country deserves," she told ABC News.

    Budde said the press should be focusing on the message of the protesters around the country.

    "It is a message of a call for justice -- for swift justice -- for George Floyd," she said, "for systemic justice for all brown and black people who have been under the knee of this country in ways that we have witnessed time and again."

    3:26 p.m.: 3 other officers charged

    Three other former Minnesota police officers have been charged in the death of George Floyd, court records show.

    Thomas Lane, 37, Tou Thao, 34, and J Alexander Kueng, 26, were charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting manslaughter, according to the court records.

    The maximum punishment for each is no more than 10 years of prison.

    Lane and Kueng were the first two officers at the scene at 8:08 p.m., according to a criminal complaint. A 911 call had come in about a man allegedly using a counterfeit $20 bill to buy merchandise at Cup Foods, the complaint read.

    Floyd was in the driver's seat of a car by the time Lane and Kueng arrived, and when the officers approached the vehicle, Lane at one point pulled his gun, the complaint read. Lane put his gun back in its holster after Floyd put his hands on the steering wheel.

    Floyd was then pulled out of the car, handcuffed, and sat on a sidewalk, according to the complaint. Floyd said "calm" at the time and said "thank you man" to Lane.

    When Lane asked Floyd if "was on anything," Lane noted that there was "foam at the edges" of Floyd's mouth.

    Officers then tried to put Floyd in a squad car after informing him he was under arrest, but he stiffened up and fell to the ground, according to the complaint. Floyd told the officers he was not resisting, but did not want to get in the back seat and was claustrophobic.

    Chauvin and Thao then arrived at the scene in a separate car.

    Demonstrators take a knee, June 2, 2020, in Philadelphia, during a protest over the death of George Floyd.
    Matt Rourke/AP

    They all tried to force Floyd into the backseat, during which time Floyd said he could not breathe, according to the complaint.

    Chauvin eventually pulled Floyd out of the passenger side of the squad car at 8:19 p.m. and Floyd fell to the ground face down, still handcuffed, according to the complaint.

    "Officer Kueng held Mr. Floyd's back and Officer Lane held his legs. Officer Chauvin placed his left knee in the area of Mr. Floyd's head and neck. Mr. Floyd said, 'I can't breathe' multiple times and repeatedly said, 'Mama' and 'please,' as well. At one point, Mr. Floyd said 'I'm about to die.' Officer Chauvin and the other two officers stayed in their positions," the complaint reads.

    Thao got a hobble restraint from the squad car to restrain Floyd, but the officers decided not to use it and stayed on top of Floyd.

    Thao also "became considered about a number of citizens who had gathered" so he stood between the citizens and the officers on top of Floyd, which is what Thao is seen doing on the video of Floyd's death, according to the complaint.

    Floyd's movements and sounds stopped at 8:24 p.m.

    At 8:25 p.m., body camera video appears to show Floyd ceasing to breathe or speak. Lane asks, "want to roll him on his side" and Kueng checks Floyd's right wrist for a pulse, but says he cannot find one.

    "None of the officers moved from their positions," the complaint reads.

    Two minutes after that, Chauvin removed his knee from Floyd's neck and an ambulance arrives. Floyd was pronounced dead at the Hennepin County Medical Center.

    Benjamin Crump, the attorney for Floyd's family, called the charges a "bittersweet" moment for the family.

    "This is a significant step forward on the road to justice, and we are gratified that this important action was brought before George Floyd's body was laid to rest," Crump said in a statement. "That is a source of peace for George's family in this painful time."

    Quincy Mason Floyd, center, son of George Floyd, and attorney Ben Crump, left, kneel at the site where George Floyd was killed, on June 3, 2020, in Minneapolis, Minn.
    Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

    Gov. Tim Walz called the charges charges "a meaningful step toward justice for George Floyd. But we must also recognize that the anguish driving protests around the world is about more than one tragic incident."

    Attorney General Keith Ellison said the charges against the three other officers were "justified by the facts and the law." He said he was not swayed by public pressure and his goal is justice for Floyd.

    "George Floyd mattered. He was loved. His family was important. His life had value and we will seek justice for him and you," Ellison said at a press conference. "The very fact that we have filed these charges means we believe in them."

    Arrests warrants were issued for Lane, Thao and Kueng. Ellison said one of the officers was already in custody and the others should be this afternoon. ABC News confirmed that Kueng was that detained officer.

    3:04 p.m.: Charges increased for Chauvin to 2nd-degree murder

    The charges against former Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin have been increased to second-degree murder, court records show.

    Chauvin, who was the officer seen on video with his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes, was charged last week with third-degree murder and manslaughter.

    All three charges are felonies.

    2:50 p.m.: Curfews extended in Minnesota, LA county

    The state of Minnesota will be under a 10 p.m. curfew again on Wednesday, Gov. Tim Walz announced.

    Walz said residents "need more than ever to lean on their neighbors, show up for their communities, and add their voice to this urgent conversation on addressing our systemic problems. Thank you for doing those things peacefully – we again ask you to plan to stay inside beginning at 10."

    Los Angeles County will also remain under a curfew. It begins on Wednesday night at 9 p.m. and ends at 5 a.m. The start time is later than previous nights.

    Residents are asked to stay in their homes during the curfew.

    "The countywide curfew does not apply to the following: peace officers; firefighters; National Guard or other military personnel deployed to the area; emergency medical services personnel; individuals traveling to and from work; individuals working on a public work of improvement construction project; credentialed media representatives involved in news gathering; people experiencing homelessness and without access to a viable shelter; and individuals seeking medical treatment," according to a statement from the county.

    1:13 p.m.: Floyd family attorney expects all officers to be arrested

    Benjamin Crump, the attorney representing George Floyd's family, said he is confident that the Minnesota attorney general is "working feverishly to do the right thing."

    "We expect all the police officers to be arrested before we have the memorial here in Minneapolis tomorrow," Crump said at a press conference at the scene of Floyd's death.

    He said the other officers are "just as guilty for the death of George Floyd as Officer [Derek] Chauvin." Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. The other three officers involved in the incident have not been arrested or charged.

    Civil rights attorney Ben Crump gestures next to George Floyd's son, Quincy Mason Floyd, as they visit the site where George Floyd was taken into police custody, in Minneapolis, June 3, 2020.
    Lucas Jackson/Reuters

    Crump urged the public to "take a breath."

    "For peace, let's take a breath. For justice, let's take a breath. to heal our country and most importantly for George Floyd," Crump said.

    11:53 a.m.: About 30,000 National Guard members activated for protests

    There are 74,000 National Guard men and women activated for domestic operations across the country, according to a statement from the National Guard.

    About 30,000 are supporting law enforcement amid protests and nearly 40,000 are supporting COVID-19 response efforts, the National Guard said.

    The number of National Guard members activated now surpassed the 51,000 Guard personnel that was activated to support Hurricane Katrina response efforts.

    "Governors in 31 states and the District of Columbia have activated 30,000 National Guard members to assist state and local law enforcement in support of civil unrest operations," according to a statement from the National Guard. "The situation remains fluid and the numbers may change rapidly as governors assess their needs."

    Gen. Joseph Lengyel, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said the National Guard "is here to help, and we will stay as long as we are needed."

    11:38 a.m.: NYC curfew to remain

    New York City will remain under a curfew from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. through June 7, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced. The mayor said he hopes to lift the curfew in time for the city's phase one of reopening.

    Restrictions on transportation will remain in place throughout the week.

    De Blasio said that the protests throughout the city last night were calmer than before.

    The mayor said that the public needed to turn their attention back to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

    "As important as the issues are being addressed [in the protests], the single most important thing is the battle against the coronavirus," de Blasio said.

    He encouraged people to stay home to the maximum extent possible, practice social distancing consistently and wear face coverings at all times.

    9:36 a.m.: UK police stand with those 'appalled' by Floyd's death

    Chief constables from forces across the United Kingdom, the chair of the National Police Chiefs' Council, the chief executive of the College of Policing and the president of the Police Superintendents' Association have issued a joint statement saying they stand with those "appalled and horrified" at George Floyd's death.

    "We are also appalled to see the violence and damage that has happened in so many US cities since then," according to the statement.

    The police said justice and accountability should follow.

    "In the UK we have a long established tradition of policing by consent, working in communities to prevent crime and solve problems. Officers are trained to use force proportionately, lawfully and only when absolutely necessary. We strive to continuously learn and improve. We will tackle bias, racism or discrimination wherever we find it," the statement said.

    The law enforcement officials acknowledged that there is more to do to make relationships between police and the public better.

    "Every day, up and down the country, officers and staff are working to strengthen those relationships and address concerns. Only by working closely with our communities do we build trust and help keep people safe," the statement read.

    Around when that statement was released, police officials also publicized statistics that showed black people in London were more likely than their white counterparts to be fined or arrested for breaching coronavirus lockdown rules.

    8:56 a.m.: Peaceful protests in Massachusetts town end with clashes

    Brockton, Massachusetts, Mayor Robert Sullivan addressed protests that began peaceful but ended with confrontations between officers and civilians.

    Sullivan said one state trooper was injured by a projectile during the protests.

    Peaceful protests dominated the day, but around 8:30 p.m. a person from the crowd set off fireworks and others threw water bottles and rocks at police, according to ABC Boston affiliate WCVB. Police responded with tear gas canisters to disperse the group.

    Some arrests were made, according to Sullivan. He said there was damage reported elsewhere in the town, including a Dunkin' Donuts that was set on fire and vandalized.

    Even as tensions rose in the evening, there was still peace. At one point, four people kneeled with hands up in front of a line of officers.

    One man who kneeled told WCVB he "had to stand up for what he believes in," but didn't want violence.

    "We come in peace," the man who only identified himself as a Brockton resident told the station. "We don't want war. We go home; they go home, and everyone is all peaceful. That is all we want."

    5:50 a.m.: NYPD arrest 280 people, looting and vandalism on the decline

    The NYPD made about 280 arrests during Tuesday night/Wednesday morning protests, a lower tally than previous nights, as the city came under an 8 p.m. curfew and stopped for-hire vehicles, CitiBikes and rental scooters that vandals had used to cause trouble.

    There were fewer officers injured as well with only two suffering minor injuries.

    A man jumps from the window of a damaged store in New York City, June 2, 2020.
    Jeenah Moon/Reuters

    There was less vandalism than there has been during previous nights as police sealed off parts of Manhattan even before the curfew took effect.

    A standoff on the Manhattan Bridge ended without incident when 5,000 demonstrators returned to Brooklyn after they had been prevented from entering Manhattan.

    3:04 a.m.: At least 9,300 people arrested across the country

    The Associated Press has announced that at least 9,300 people arrested in protests across the country since George Floyd's death, according to their tally.

    The events leading up to Floyd's death were filmed, went viral and has been the catalyst for protests nationwide.

    Police were called at around 8 p.m. on May 25 by an employee of the Cup Foods convenience store alleging that a customer used a counterfeit bill to pay for cigarettes and that the person appeared drunk, according to the 911 log released by the Minneapolis Police Department.

    The employee went to the car outside the store where the customer was sitting and asked him to return the cigarettes, but was denied, according to the 911 call transcript.

    A protester outside St George's Hall on June 2, 2020 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.
    Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

    The employee described the customer as a 6-foot-6 black man, which was Floyd's height, and repeated to the 911 operator that he appeared drunk.

    Around eight minutes later, Minneapolis police officers Thomas Lane and J.A. Kueng arrived at the shop and approached Floyd and two others in the car, according to the criminal complaint. A few minutes after that officers Derek Chauvin and Tou Thoa arrived to help arrest Floyd, which led to Chauvin placing his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes, the criminal complaint said.

    All four officers were fired and, but as of Tuesday afternoon, Chauvin is the only one to have been arrested. He was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Minnesota's Department of Human Rights filed civil rights charges against the Minneapolis Police Department on Tuesday.

    1:50 a.m.: 200 Arrested in Houston, police stress that majority of protests were peaceful

    The Houston Police Department announced that they made more than 200 arrests in downtown Houston Tuesday involving people engaged in criminal conduct, including throwing rocks and bottles at officers, and people who refused to clear the streets when they were ordered to do so.

    "This is an extremely low number of arrests considering the thousands of people in our community who marched and demonstrated peacefully today," the HPD said in a tweet. "We're not aware of any significant property damage or injuries. We will have updated arrest numbers/info later this morning."

    1:09 a.m.: Prince George's County Police suspends 3 officers for use of force

    After seeing cell phone footage of two officers using excessive force while detaining a suspect at a Langley Park gas station in Maryland, Chief Hank Stawinski of the Prince George's County Police Department and the Department's Executive Command Staff made the decision to immediately suspend the two involved officers and their supervisor while the incident is investigated.

    In the video, while attempting to handcuff the suspect, one of the officers can be seen kicking the suspect twice.

    "I am sorry and I am angry. I am sharing the video in the interest of transparency. During my tenure as chief of police, four officers have been criminally prosecuted for assault. This will be thoroughly investigated and in keeping with past practice, the findings will be referred to the office of the state's attorney," Stawinski said.

    The preliminary investigation revealed the officer who used force observed an assault and attempted to detain the involved suspects. After a foot chase that ended at the gas station, he was able to handcuff one suspect. He is then seen on the video taking the second suspect to the ground.

    When a backup officer arrived, that second officer assisted the first officer in the apprehension. During that attempt to handcuff the suspect, the first officer kicked the suspect. The two suspects were ultimately released when the assault victim could not be located.

    12:31 a.m.: DC National Guard has directed an investigation into use of medical helicopter to target, disperse DC protesters

    The Washington, D.C., National Guard has announced that they are directing an investigation into the actions of their rotary aviation assets on June 1 after it was reported that their medical helicopters were used to target protesters.

    According to The Washington Post, numerous videos were posted on social media showing a Lakota medevac helicopter with Red Cross markings hovering very low over demonstrators, possibly in an effort to disperse the crowds.

    The use of a medical helicopter in a law enforcement capacity may violate military law and regulations.

    "Our priority is the safety of our Guardsmen who support civil authorities," the DCNG said in a tweet. "We are dedicated to ensuring the safety of citizens and their right to protest."

    12:04 a.m.: Ferguson elects 1st African American mayor

    The city of Ferguson, the site of 2014 unrest and protests over racial justice after Michael Brown, an 18-year old black man, was killed by a white police officer, elected its first African American mayor Tuesday.

    Ella Jones, a councilwoman in the predominantly black city, is also the first woman to hold the position, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She will succeed James Knowles III, a term-limited, Republican mayor who defeated Jones in 2017.

    This year, Jones defeated another councilwoman, Heather Robinett, by 6 points, according to unofficial results from county election officials.

    10:39 p.m.: Trump objects to GOP criticism of church photo-op

    President Donald Trump lashed out at fellow Republicans who have criticized his decision to clear protesters out of Lafayette Park on Monday evening prior to a photo op in front of St. John's Episcopal Church.

    He called out Sens. Susan Collins of Maine, James Lankford of Oklahoma and Ben Sasse of Nebraska, who were critical of the violent removal of peaceful protesters with flash-bangs and smoke canisters.

    "You got it wrong! If the protesters were so peaceful, why did they light the Church on fire the night before?" he tweeted, though it was a different group of protesters and Monday's group had not been violent. "People liked my walk to this historic place of worship! Sen. Susan Collins, Sen. James Lankford, Sen. Ben Sasse."

    ABC News' Kendall Karson, Alexandra Faul, Chad Murray, Aaron Katersky, Matt Stone, Elizabeth McLaughlin, Ben Stein, Alex Stone, Rachel Scott and Whitney Lloyd contributed to this report.

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