Over a month after George Floyd's murder, two of the officers involved in the incident appeared in court to face charges related to the crime. As Star Tribune reporter Glen Stubbe posted on Twitter, two of the officers, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane, were seen in court on Monday. Both of the cops, who have since been fired by the Minneapolis Police Department, are currently out on bail. Derek Chauvin, the officer who knelt on Floyd's neck for almost nine minutes, and Tou Thao, another officer involved in the incident, remain in police custody.
Stubbe posted two photos from the courthouse on Monday. In the images, both Kueng and Lane can be seen sporting masks as they make their way to court for a pretrial hearing. Shortly after the two officers were spotted in court, a new detail emerged about Kueng's defense regarding the case. Documents obtained by Law and Crime show that Kueng "intends to rely upon" self-defense, reasonable use of force, and the authorized use of force. He also reportedly plans to plead not guilty. At the time of the article's publication, none of the cops involved in Floyd's murder have officially entered their pleas.
Former Minneapolis cops Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane, just arrived in court to face charges in the murder of #GeorgeFloyd . They are currently ont on bail. Derek Chauvin and Tou Thao are still in custody. pic.twitter.com/9CmqK9Ui4m— Glen Stubbe (@gspphoto) June 29, 2020
Days after Floyd's May 25 murder, Chauvin, the officer who was seen kneeling on his neck, was arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison later announced that he would be elevating the charges against Chauvin to second-degree murder and manslaughter. Additionally, the three officers who were also on the scene at the time — Thao, Kueng, and Lane — were charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter. Following this incident, Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said during an interview with CNN that all three of those officers were "complicit" in Floyd's death.
"Mr. Floyd died in our hands, and so I see that as being complicit," Arradondo said on May 31. "Silence and inaction — you're complicit. You're complicit. If there were one solitary voice that would have intervened ... that's what I would have hoped for. There are absolute truths in life ... the killing of Mr. Floyd was an absolute truth that it was wrong. I did not need days or weeks or months or processes or bureaucracies to tell me that what occurred out here last Monday was wrong."