MINNEAPOLIS — Footage from two police-worn body cameras has been made public in the George Floyd case.
Judge Peter Cahill filed an order Friday allowing the media and members of the public to get copies of the body-worn camera videos from former officers Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng. The footage shows the arrest of Floyd and the moments leading up to his death.
George Floyd died in Minneapolis police custody on Memorial Day 2020, after bystander video showed former officer Derek Chauvin's knee on his neck for over nine minutes as Floyd was heard saying "I can't breathe."
Chauvin was charged with second-degree and third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. Former officers Lane, Kueng and Tou Thao are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder. All four officers were fired.
KARE 11 obtained copies of the body camera videos on Monday. They can be viewed in their entirety here. (Warning: These videos include graphic content and language.)
On July 15, reporters including KARE 11's Lou Raguse were allowed to view the videos by appointment at the courthouse.
Raguse reported at that time that the videos show Lane and Kueng approach George Floyd's car parked near Cup Foods at 38th and Chicago on May 25. Lane is seen pulling out a flashlight and tapping on the window, visibly startling Floyd. Lane can be heard on the video ordering Floyd to show his hands. The body camera video then shows Lane pulling out his gun and pointing it at Floyd for 41 seconds.
Floyd is heard on the video telling the officers, "I got shot the same way Mr. Officer, before," a statement also shown in a transcript of the body camera video released by the court.
Body camera footage shows Floyd was handcuffed within two minutes of the officers confronting him in his car. The officers then move Floyd to the side of the building and order him to sit down.
The footage then shows a three-minute struggle as the officers attempt to place Floyd in a squad car. Lane and Kueng attempt to push Floyd into the back of the car from the driver's side before Lane moves to the passenger's side and attempts to pull Floyd into the vehicle. Floyd can be heard on the video saying he's claustrophobic multiple times, and says he recently had COVID.
Officers Chauvin and Thao first appear on the body camera footage during the struggle at the squad car, with Thao helping Kueng on the driver's side, and Chauvin helping Lane pull Floyd from the passenger's side of the squad car. Floyd then falls out of the car on the passenger's side, and is heard saying "thank you" before Chauvin places Floyd in the knee restraint.
The body camera footage shows Chauvin with his knee on Floyd's neck for nine minutes and 27 seconds, nearly 45 seconds longer than the time originally cited in police reports. During this time, Lane and Kueng also appear to be actively holding Floyd down at some point, though in the last minute Kueng can be seen squatting nearby.
Lane can be heard on the video suggesting that they roll Floyd over, while Floyd is still conscious. The video also shows Floyd's movements gradually slow, he stops talking, and then stops moving.
Kueng can be seen checking for a pulse and saying, "I can't find one."
After Floyd is taken away in an ambulance, Kueng can be seen picking up a body camera off the ground near Floyd's shoe and handing it to Chauvin, indicating Chauvin's camera may have fallen off during the earlier squad car struggle.
The body camera videos were first filed as evidence in court on July 7, along with a defense attorney's motion to dismiss charges against Lane. They were not released to the public at that time.
On July 13, a coalition of media companies, including KARE 11, filed a motion to obtain copies of the body camera. On July 15, reporters were allowed to view the video by appointment, but news outlets objected to the limitations.
A hearing was held July 21, and neither the state nor the defense objected to the footage being released to the media. On Friday, Aug. 7, Judge Peter Cahill filed an order releasing the video to media and members of the public who want to obtain copies.
The Hennepin County Sheriff's Office is investigating an apparent leak of the footage by the Daily Mail last week.