Derek Chauvin, the ex-Minneapolis cop accused of George Floyd's murder, made his first court appearance on Monday. The prosecutors increased his bail to $1.25 million from $1 million set earlier. This was due to the high-profile nature of the alleged crime and the public outrage that ensued, prosecutor Matthew Frank said.
Chauvin (44), a white Minneapolis police officer, was caught on camera kneeling on the neck of George Floyd, a 46-year old African American man, as the latter gasped for air. He knelt on his neck for over eight minutes, even after Floyd had passed out. This May 25 incident caused a worldwide uproar, with people hitting the streets to protest against racism and police brutality.
Chauvin was fired the next day, arrested and charged with Floyd's murder on May 29. At that time, charges of third-degree murder and manslaughter were leveled against him, which were later raised to second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. He is being held at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Oak Park Heights in Stillwater, outside Minneapolis, CNN reported.
On Monday, Chauvin, a 19-year police veteran, appeared in his first court hearing, which was held via video-conferencing. He wore an orange prison jumpsuit, blue mask and was handcuffed. He did not speak during the 15-minuted hearing.
Judge Jeannice Reding set his bail at $1.25 million without any condition. He was offered a reduced bail of $1 million with conditions, which include terms such as he will not work in law enforcement or security services, not contact Floyd's family, surrender all his firearms and not leave Minnesota. His lawyer did not object to the bail amount. His next court hearing is on June 29.
Charges Against Three Other Officers
The three other officers -- Tou Thao, Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane -- who were caught on camera during Floyd's murder have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter. Their bail has been set at $1 million without conditions, which could be lowered to $750,000 with certain conditions. Their court hearing is set on June 29 as well.
The gruesome killing of George Floyd has caused widespread protests not only in the U.S. but in several parts of the world, where people have come forward to demonstrate against racism, police brutality and show solidarity with the George Floyd protesters in the U.S. On Sunday, nine Minneapolis city council members pledged to defund and dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department to end the "city's toxic relationship with the Minneapolis Police Department", Council President Lisa Bender announced.