Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who was seen kneeling on George Floyd's neck before his death in police custody, was reportedly the subject of at least 10 complaints, before the fatal incident. According to the New York Post, Chauvin has been on the job for about 19 years, and has never received disciplinary action, other than a letter of reprimand, in any of the complaints.
The first complaint came in 2006, after Chauvin and six other officers opened fire on Wayne Reyes, a man suspected in a double stabbing. Per a police report, Chauvin and the other officer shot Reyes after he allegedly pointed a shotgun at them from his truck. It was unclear which officers actually fired their weapons, so they were all placed on paid leave while the situation was investigated. Two years later, in 2008, Chauvin responded to a domestic violence call and fired on a man who allegedly grabbed at his gun. He was placed on leave after this incident as well.
Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin, who knelt on George Floyd's neck, has had 17 complaints against him filed over the years.
All but one were closed without discipline, per records. pic.twitter.com/WSy57sKr4S— Tasneem N (@TasneemN) May 28, 2020
In 2011, Chauvin and a number of other officers were placed on leave after the shooting of 23-year-old Leroy Martinez. The officers claims that Martinex had a weapon, but eyewitnesses stated that he had already dropped his weapon and had his hands in the air when police fired on him. However, it is reported that Chauvin did not fire his gun during this particular incident. The Minneapolis Police Chief at the time, Tim Dolan, commented on the incident and stated that all the officers "acted appropriately and courageously."
Additionally, Chauvin was the subject of a number of internal complaints, according to Communities United Against Police Brutality. In three reviews from the Civilian Review Authority, he was found to have used "derogatory languag" and a "demeaning tone." He was also subjected to seven reviews by the local Office of Police Conduct. All the reviews concluded with: "Closed — No discipline."
Following Floyd's death, Chauvin and three other arresting officers have been fired from the Minneapolis Police Department. Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey has since called for the four men to be brought up on criminal charges. "He'd be alive today if he were white," Frey stated. "I'm not a prosecutor, but let me be clear, the arresting officer killed someone."