The third day of the trial of Black man George Floyd’s murder was as disturbing as the first two days as the court has been shown new police bodycam footage in which he was seen pleading with officers during his arrest, saying: “I’m not a bad guy.”
A White ex-police officer, Derek Chauvin, knelt on the neck of Floyd for 9:29 minutes resulting in his death. In the new footage, Floyd is seen begging for police not to harm him.
The court has been shown footage from the body cameras belonging to officers Thomas Lane, J Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao. Chauvin’s camera fell to the ground as the arrest unfolded and so did not give a visual recording of the event.
In Officer Lane’s footage, Floyd is seen being confronted by police. He begs them: “Please don’t shoot me… I just lost my mom.”
He is handcuffed and continues to plead with Officers Lane and Kueng, saying he is not resisting them and “will do anything you tell me to”.
A scuffle occurs when police try to get Floyd into a vehicle, and he starts crying and resisting while saying he is claustrophobic and has anxiety.
Officers Chauvin and Thao arrive as the arrest goes on.
As the police officers drag him out of the car and restrain him on the ground, Floyd can be heard calling for his mother and telling his family members he loves them.
Bystanders begin to shout at officers to check Floyd’s pulse and stop restraining him.
Shop employee Christopher Martin, 19, told the court he briefly interacted with Floyd as a customer inside Cup Foods shortly before his arrest.
He said Floyd “appeared to be high” because he struggled to respond to a simple question, but he was lucid enough to able to hold a conversation. He described Floyd as “friendly and approachable”.
In the shop’s surveillance video, Floyd can be seen laughing, talking to people, and walking around.
Martin said he had sold Floyd a packet of cigarettes, and received a counterfeit note as payment. Martin described knowing the bill was fake by its colour and texture, but added that Floyd “didn’t seem to know it was a fake note”.
He said he had considered letting the shop deduct it from his wages instead of confronting Floyd, but then decided to tell his manager. Another employee went on to call the police.
Martin, who witnessed the arrest, said he felt “disbelief and guilt” because “if I’d have just not taken the bill, this could have been avoided”.
Another witness, Charles McMillian, 61, told the court he engaged in conversation with Floyd, urging him to get into the police car.
He said he remembers feeling “helpless” seeing the incident unfold. He can be heard on video telling Chauvin: “Your knee on his neck, that’s wrong man.”
As the court was shown footage of the arrest, McMillian began to sob, and the judge called for a brief recess.
Floyd’s 2020 death sparked global protests over policing and racism.
Officer Chauvin, 45, denies charges of murder and manslaughter. Defence lawyers have indicated they will argue that 46-year-old Floyd died of an overdose and poor health, and the force used was reasonable.
Observers of the trial say footage shown of Floyd’s actions before and during the arrest may be an attempt by prosecutors to deal with the allegation that drugs played a part in his death.