The Minneapolis Police Chief, Medaria Arradondo, testified Monday that retaining the neck, as former agent Derek Chauvin did with the late African-American George Floyd, is a violation of institution policy.
Testifying in the Chauvin murder trial, Arradondo said: that restriction is not “part of our policy, not part of our training, and it is certainly not part of our ethics or values.”
Arradondo, a 54-year-old black man who has been in charge of the police in that city for three years, was summoned by the prosecution to this extraordinary trial, after a first week of testimonials, mostly moving, that captivated the public in the United States.
In the United States, police officers who use excessive force are rarely fired by their superiors and, on the contrary, benefit from collective agreements, negotiated by their union, which are very protective.
Furthermore, they are very rarely prosecuted and less frequently found guilty.
Separately, the emergency room doctor who pronounced George Floyd dead after attempting to resuscitate him testified Monday that at the time he was handling the hypothesis that Floyd’s heart stopped beating due to lack of oxygen.
Dr. Bradford Langenfeld, who was in the emergency room at Hennepin Medical Center that night, testified Derek Chauvin at the trial.
Langenfeld stated that Floyd’s heart stopped beating even before he reached the hospital. He added that he was not informed of any attempts by bystanders or police to resuscitate Floyd, but that paramedics told him they tried for about 30 minutes.
When questioned by prosecutor Jerry Blackwell, Langenfeld said that based on the information he had at the time, “it was more likely than the other possibilities” that Floyd’s cardiac paralysis was due to suffocation.
Chauvin, 45, is charged with murder in Floyd’s death on May 25 of last year. The officer, who is white, is accused of pressing with his knee the neck of Floyd, who was African American, for 9 minutes and 29 seconds. Floyd, who was 46, was handcuffed, face down, on the street in front of a store where he allegedly tried to pay for cigarettes with a fake $ 20 bill.
The defense argues that Chauvin acted as he was trained and that the cause of death was drug use and other health problems that Floyd had from before.
Eric Nelson, Chauvin’s attorney, asked Langenfeld if certain drugs can cause hypoxia, that is, a lack of oxygen.. The doctor acknowledged that both fentanyl and methamphetamine, both substances found in Floyd’s body, can have this effect.
The coroner’s office classified Floyd’s death as a homicide, that is, caused by someone else.
The official report determined that Floyd died of “cardiopulmonary paralysis, combined with measures of police subjugation and neck compression”. It adds that fentanyl poisoning and recent methamphetamine use were “other significant conditions” but not “cause of death.”
With information from AFP and AP