The Justice Department Announces Civil Rights Indictments Against All Four Former Officers In Floyd Death

The Justice Department has secured indictments of  the four former Minneapolis police officers involved in George Floyd’s arrest and death.  The three-count indictment unsealed Friday names Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao.The indictment creates as new front for the officers and a type of insurance for state prosecutors if they fail to convict the three remaining officers (or Derek Chauvin is given a new trial).

I have previously written that convictions of officers like Lane could be challenging as opposed to Chauvin who was the principle actor. I stated from the outset that Chauvin could legitimately be convicted even though I viewed the stronger charge to be manslaughter, not murder.

This allows for the officers to face federal changes based on the same conduct. Indeed, that is why these collateral charges have been challenged in the past as raising double jeopardy claims.

The Court has adopted a highly permissive approach that has fueled the increased use of parallel federal prosecutions. The foundation for this rule was laid in Blockburger v. United States, 284 U.S. 299 (1932), where the Supreme Court held that “where the same act or transaction constitutes a violation of two distinct statutory provisions, the test to be applied to determine whether there are two offenses or only one, is whether each provision requires proof of an additional fact which the other does not.” The Supreme Court has also emphasized that, as separate sovereign powers, the federal government retains the right prosecute for its own crimes. In United States v. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542 (1875), stressed that:

“It is the natural consequence of a citizenship which owes allegiance to two sovereignties, and claims protection from both. The citizen cannot complain, because he has voluntarily submitted himself to such a form of government. He owes allegiance to the two departments, so to speak, and within their respective spheres must pay the penalties which each exacts for disobedience to its laws.”

The charges come after Chauvin filed a request for a new trial, including allegations of the denial of an unbiased jury.  One issue could be the alleged false statements by a juror about his prior involvement in protests.

The federal charges mean that, even if Chauvin gets a new trial or the other former officers are acquitted, they will remain subject to federal charges.

67 thoughts on “The Justice Department Announces Civil Rights Indictments Against All Four Former Officers In Floyd Death”

  1. I disagree with charging for the same crime in multiple court systems. Justice should mean paying a penalty for a crime, not paying repeated penalties for the same crime.

    I also disagree with charging all four officers for civil rights violations as if they contributed equally. Lane offered to sit in the back with Floyd when he began to allegedly suffer from the effects of the meth and fentanyl, offered to turn the AC on, and suggested multiple times to move him to a different position, on his side. Land and another officer were rookies days on the job.

    This isn’t justice; it’s revenge and catering to a mob.

    1. CA keeps trying to remove immunity from police, so that they can be personally sued in civil court. That would mean that every cop would go bankrupt, because every arrestee could sue for twisting his ankle while running from cops.

      1. No it wouldn’t. Civil attorneys work for a percentage of any damages awarded. Most lawyers are smart, they aren’t going to take cases they very likely can’t win.

        1. Many Liberal Democrat attorney’s work for the swamp so they are not always paid in the usual fashion.

    2. The flaw in this argument is that a state could effectively nullify a federal law by making a charge with nominal punishment which would preempt a federal charge. Ten dollar fine for (insert charge here).

      1. Ken B – you make one of the best arguments for this duality. Yet, what to do about duplicate charges that just pile on significant penalties?

    3. Karen S says “This isn’t justice; it’s revenge and catering to a mob.”

      Totally agree. But sadly, me thinks this is the “new” justice.

  2. What did they call the lawyers who got the double-murderer OJ off? Was that the Dream Team? Those lawyers knew he did it and they were celebrated for helping a double-murderer go free.

    These cops DESERVE a vigorous defense. Where is the dream team of lawyers to defend these cops?

  3. Apparently no one here actually followed the testimony during the trial closely. Did anyone PROVE that Chauvin “choked out” Floyd? Was there any determination of the amount of force Chavin applied to Floyd’s neck? Any SWAG estimate of the PSI or foot/lbs of pressure? NO. I asked my nurse wife about cutting off the blood flow to the carotid arteries. She responded that nurses are trained to NOT grasp the neck between the thumb and forefinger to avoid cutting off circulation to both carotid arteries. She also stated that the brain can get sufficient blood flow from only one carotid artery therefore even if Chauvin was applying sufficient pressure to the side of Floyd’s neck to cut off flow, it would have been impossible to have killed Floyd from that pressure as the remaining carotid artery was a sufficient supply to sustain life. Who was the prosecution’s “expert” on choke holds? An MMA fighter.

    To insist that Chauvin should have stopped application of knee force to Floyd’s shoulder when Floyd stopped struggling ( yes shoulder – as the body cam evidence from multiple angles clearly showed), is a judgment call bordering on claiming that a non-medically trained individual should have been clairvoyant. The testimony showed the EMTs were called at an appropriate time but were held up in traffic. Upon arrival, the situation was so tense the EMTs were not comfortable treating Floyd on scene and moved him blocks away before stopping and trying to revive him.

    The incomprehensible decision of the judge to deny change of venue, sequester the jury, or embargo their phones, the prosecutorial misconduct of dumping tons of evidence on Chauvin’s attorney at the last minute, and calling the defense attorney a liar in closing arguments (not allowed in a criminal trial), and the statement of a juror that juries should be a vehicle for social justice, should gain Chauvin a mistrial decision.

    Then maybe we will have a fair trial and conviction.

    1. So, the direct cause for a progressive loss of viability was drug overdose coupled with diverse comorbidities producing a medical event that preceded the officer’s restraint with a knee on the shoulder blade and prompted an early exit from the cruiser and call for medical services. The proximate cause of his death was a belligerent crowd that prevented safe and timely provision of medical aid. Social justice was served and portends trampling the rights and lives of Chauvin and four other officers in its wake.

      1. If this scenario you’ve created were true (and it’s not) how do you explain the fact there was an off duty first responder in the crowd imploring Chauvin to get off Floyd’s neck and take his pulse? She even volunteered to do it herself when she recognized the signs of positional asphyia but was rebuffed by the officers on the scene.

        Short of watching actual testimony in the trial, and it’s clear by your commentary that you didn’t, it would help to familiarize yourself with the footage of the encounter.


        1. There have been different testimonies given, including the video evidence. The forensic evidence does not support her testimony. The video evidence shows a knee on his back. The asphyxia was an in progress medical event that originated on or before entry to the cruiser and prompted his early exit. Furthermore, there is no evidence to support the accounts that diversity was a motive.

          1. Thanks for the fact free venture into craytown. That’s where I value your insight on this.


            1. The evidence of asphyxia, whether positional or other induced condition, is based on inference from plausible forcings, a video that triggered an emotional response, and political pressure (in progress), not forensic evidence, and variable circumstantial second-hand testimonies. And, no, there is no evidence that diversity (e.g. racism) was a motive. Floyd suffered from diverse comorbidities ( cardioviovascular impairments), anxiety-induced stress (probably a conscience reaction), ingesting a large dose of drugs, a known Covid-19 case, and a progressive condition that preceded restraint.

    2. ” Who was the prosecution’s “expert” on choke holds? An MMA fighter.”

      The MMA fighter was an eyewitness to the murder and was heard in footage repeatedly imploring Chauvin to get off Floyd’s neck and take his pulse when Floyd lost consciousness.

      Submission tactics were covered for the prosecution by the head of MPD’s submission curriculum, a trainer lower down the chain in MPD submission holds, the chief of the MPD (with several questions during his testimony), and an expert in said training from, I’m going to say it was LA.

      The defense countered with one witness on the topic.

      Just as an aside, it doesn’t take much to pass someone out through carotid pressure — and that’s not even figuring in positional asphyxia present in this case…


      1. So zeig heil elvis this synopsis of yours must lead to federal civil rights charges ?. Boulderdash , and you know it.

        1. Setting aside space for the intrinsic insanity of your post and answering strictly on the claim of “boulderdash” (and me knowing it), well, no, you couldn’t be more wrong.


    1. Gestapo!



      Comradette Pamela Karlan of the American Communist (liberal, progressive, socialist, democrat, RINO) KGB, the “Justice” Department, is conducting an attack of the fully transparent, innocuous, fact-finding audit of the Arizona 2020 election ballots.

      Next, the illustrious beneficiary of affirmative action, welfare, food stamps, WIC, SNAP, TANF, female-friendly divorce laws and glorious comradette will “Shock and Awe” with a bombshell jack boot raid of the ballot audit in Windham, New Hampshire.

      You go, girl!

      Whatever are the communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) so deathly afraid of?

      “Justice Department Raises Concerns Over Cyber Ninjas’ “Audit” of Arizona Ballots”

      The Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Civil Rights Division has expressed serious concerns over an audit of the 2020 election in Arizona’s largest county, noting that the firm hired to conduct the review may be taking illegal actions.

      In a letter written by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Pamela Karlan, the DOJ worried that 2.1 million ballots from Maricopa County may be compromised due to the lack of security at the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum where the audit is taking place.

      The letter also raised concerns over whether the audit was targeting voters of color.

      – Truthout

  4. In the cult type thinking {if you can call what they do as thinking} charges should have been brought up against Mr. Floyd for the injury to Chauvin’s knee. After 9 minutes there had to be some kind of discomfort to the officers knee.

      1. If Americans are free, and their freedom is nearly infinite per the 9th Amendment, shall they not be free to hold opinions on every subject; to accept or reject anything, any individual or any group?

        Will you next order whom to marry?

        Prohibition against the ability of a human being to notice the difference, or to discriminate, in every possible situation and circumstance, is antithetical and irrefutably unconstitutional.

        You, the communist “dictatorship of the proletariat,” possess no constitutional power to compel the beliefs and opinions of free Americans.

        You, the communist “dictatorship of the proletariat,” possess no constitutional power to favor or, otherwise, improve the social condition of any individuals or groups of individuals; to make one superior and another inferior.

  5. The constitutional prohibition against double jeopardy is not qualified by the Constitution and is, therefore, absolute.

    The constitutional prohibition against double jeopardy is in full force and effect against any and all forms of subsequent and additional jeopardy in the original jurisdiction and any and all forms of subsequent and additional jeopardy in several jurisdictions, including federal jurisdiction.

    “…nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb;…”

    5th Amendment

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

  6. I wonder if this an indication that the feds think he has a good chance on appeal?

  7. To me, this is further case in point supporting police wearing of bodycams (and keeping them on at all times) in every jurisdiction. An ounce of prevention. Clearly, Chauvin was the George Floyd case waiting to happen. A bodycam on him throughout his time on MPD would surely have developed his backstory sufficiently for the MPD to make a judgement on him before absolute disaster struck. It could’ve prevented a murder and also not put these other, less experienced, cops under his command on the street. Water under the bridge, no doubt…

    But re creating another front for these officers, they’re victims of flawed policy in MPD that was obviously short sighted and, in some ways, created this other ‘front’ for them. The chips have to fall where they may, how they may, now.


  8. I found this part interesting. The report also said Kueng, Thao, and Lane are additionally charged separately by the grand jury “in counts one and two of the indictment for depriving Floyd of his right to follow his necessary drug regimen and for failing to call a Uber or Lyft ride for him to enable him to return to the comforts of his home.”

  9. Two standards of justice are being practiced in the United States these days. I hold no brief for Derek Chauvin, but he is being treated differently and more harshly than others charged with serious crimes. What has happened to our independent judiciary? Will any courageous judge step forward and denounce the disparities here?

  10. If you’re on the job now take your time getting to the call. Wait for the shots are stopped, knife fights over, beating is done. Just pick up the pieces right you’re report and go home to the family.

  11. In 2005 The Supreme Court ruled that the police did not have a constitutional duty to protect a person from harm. With that in mind what is the legal basis for suggesting that the officers had ANY duty t help him at all. The bottom line is very unpleasant but still true. Had this man peacefully complied with police orders he would almost certainly Not have died. If I break into your house I assume certain risk. If I knowingly sleep with another mans wife, both She and I assume certain risk. Death is the most serious of the risk I willingly assume by committing crime. Floyd willingly assumed the same risk when he commented the crime then resisted arrest.

  12. Put a knee on his shoulder!
    Then one on the neck…

    Lindsey Graham Cracker says the party can survive without Trump!

  13. George Floyd had about as SEVERE heart disease as is possible, as in FIVE BLOCKED ARTERIES (one blockage 25%, one blockage 75%, one blockage 90%. another blockage 90%, and yet another blockage 90%). This is considered the worst of the worst cardiovascular disease, and the only real treatment option was bypass surgery. Furthermore he had in ENLARGED heart AND copious amounts of illegal drugs in his system. Combined that with his struggle while RESISTING ARREST and he was a ticking time-bomb, a recipe for sudden cardiac death. I know, my 51 year old brother died an hour after playing tennis from sudden cardiac death, he had no drugs in his system, but he did, unknown to him, have severe heart disease… ONLY his was not nearly as severe as George Floyd’s. He had two 50% blockages and two 75% blockages. The official cause of death was “severe calcific artery disease”. If the police happened to be trying to arrest him at the time… and he was black… they’d call it murder.

  14. Fortunately, burning down cities and pointing assault rifles at the heads of passing motorists are still perfectly legal as long as you are wearing a BLM tshirt.

  15. Chauvin is an insult to the French people. They should sue him in France to make him change his name. Frog would be a fair name.

  16. This may not be “double jeopardy” by some legal technicality, but it surely is. The same act being judged a second time.

  17. So, in other words, these guys are screwed whether or not they are innocent. Isn’t our justice system great?

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