George Floyd's family to sue Derek Chauvin to hold him 'accountable' as he may receive $1M in benefits: Lawyer
The lawsuit news came after it was reported that Chauvin could still get more than $1 million in pension benefits in retirement even if he is found guilty
The family of George Floyd is launching a civil and criminal lawsuit against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin to hold him “fully accountable”, their lawyer said. Floyd, an African-American, died on May 25 after Chauvin knelt on his neck for over eight minutes. The Floyd family’s attorney Benjamin Crump has said that they will be making the "killer cop" and former policeman "fully accountable in every aspect, criminal and civil”, adding that urgent reforms to the US police departments were required after the 46-year-old’s death, who was unarmed at the time of tragedy.
“It wasn’t just the knee of Derek Chauvin that killed George Floyd in Minneapolis, it was the knee of the entire police department. Because when you have that kind of culture and behavior of a police department, it is foreseeable that something like this is going to happen,” Crump told CNN, as reported by The Sun.
"We have to terminate people when they use these bad policies, despite what the police unions say, because if we don't terminate them, it is absolutely predictable that you'll have somebody do a chokehold or neck restraint for 8 minutes and 46 seconds because they know there's no accountability,' he said. "There's no discipline when they do this to black people in America."
The lawsuit news came after it was reported that Chauvin could still get more than $1 million in pension benefits in retirement even if he is found guilty of the charges pressed against him after Floyd’s death. Chauvin was immediately fired from his position with Minneapolis Police Department after a video of him kneeling on Floyd’s neck went viral. He was arrested after people across the US took to streets to protest and demand an end to police brutality and racism. Chauvin has been charged with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
However, despite all of these, Chauvin's pension, partly funded by taxpayers, reportedly remains secure because Minnesota state laws do not forfeit employees who have been convicted of work-related felonies from their pension. It has been said that the Minnesota Public Employees Retirement Association has confirmed that if Chauvin, who is 44-year-old now, is convicted, he would still be eligible to file for his pension at age 50. His retirement benefits could exceed $1.5million over the next 30 years, reports said.
The other three police officers who were fired and charged with aiding and abetting the murder of Floyd are Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng, and Thomas Lane. While the two of them are reportedly not eligible for a pension since they were rookies, Thao, who was not a rookie and would likely be eligible to receive his pension.
In another related report, Lane’s lawyer Earl Gray has blamed Floyd for his death and said he should have been more compliant when the cops tried to get him out of his car. Gray said Floyd "didn't show his hands" and "put his right hand down below the seat, which is clear evidence... that he might be going to grab a gun or hide drugs."
"They then took Mr. Floyd out of his vehicle because they were going to arrest him and he resisted leaving his vehicle, they finally got him out of his vehicle. It wasn’t a violent resistance but it wasn’t a kind of non-resistance that an individual should do when police officers are arresting him. He should get out of his vehicle and follow the orders of the police officers. He didn’t do that,” Gray added.