Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was taken in custody four days after George Floyd’s fatal arrest.
Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said Chauvin was arrested for third-degree murder and manslaughter charges, and subsequent charges are possible.
Chauvin was fired on Tuesday along with three other officers after a video surfaced of him kneeling on Floyd’s neck while the latter pleads for air.
Minnesota Department of Public Safety commissioner John Harrington announced that the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension took Chauvin into custody, dismissing rumors that the cop had run to Florida.
“We have now been able to put together the evidence that we need. Even as late as yesterday afternoon, we did not have all that we needed,” Freeman said. “This is by far the fastest that we’ve ever charged a police officer.”
The police department initially claimed Floyd “physically resisted” the officers and that his death is caused by “suffering medical distress.”
However, security footage from a nearby restaurant showed Floyd was forcibly removed from a car parked on the street, handcuffed and questioned, and eventually walking him across the street while another police car arrives.
Freeman told reporters that he anticipates more charges to come, possibly including some of the other three officers.
“The investigation is ongoing,” Freeman said, “We felt it was appropriate to focus on the most dangerous perpetrator. This case has moved with extraordinary speed.”
“All of that has come together and we felt, in our professional judgement, it was time to charge,” he added.
A third-degree murder means an offender has no intentions to kill, but that someone died “by perpetrating an act eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life.”
If proven guilty, Chauvin could land in prison for up to 25 years for third-degree murder conviction.