Shomporko Desk:- 1 of the 4 former Minneapolis law enforcement officials who have been charged over the loss of life of George Floyd, 46, a black man whose death in custody set out protests for police reform and racial justice, was discharged on bail on Wed.
Protests flaring for a seventeenth day early Thursday with crowds in Portland, Oregon, flooding city-centre streets and a few activists throwing bottles at police.
The former police officer released, Thomas Lane, 37, had been held on $750,000 bail and was freed from Hennepin County jail, sheriff’s office records showed.
He was one of three officers charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death on May 25.
A fourth officer, Derek Chauvin, was videotaped pressing his knee to Floyd’s neck as he gasped “I can’t breathe” and called for his mother before he died. Chauvin was charged with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
All four officers have been fired from the Minneapolis police department.
Lane’s attorney, Earl Gray, did not immediately return telephone phone calls to Reuters on Wednesday night but Gray has told media that his client tried to help Floyd.
Gray also told the media that Lane was only on his fourth day on the job on patrol duty and that Chauvin was his training officer, whom he should obey.
“What was my client supposed to do but follow what his training officer said?” Gray said in a court hearing, Forbes and other media reported.
Chauvin’s lawyer was not immediately available for comment.
Many of those joining the more than two weeks of protests have been calling for a ban on chokeholds and other methods of restraint used by police.
Police have also been criticized for heavy-handed tactics against protesters in various places. Indiscriminate use of tear gas, flash grenades, and many incidents of police hitting protesters with batons have been recorded.
The protests have seen fewer clashes in recent days but in Portland, some in the crowd threw bottles at police and cut down a fence near the federal courthouse, police said on Twitter, warning that offenders are subject to arrest.
Photo Credit: PBS News Hour