George Floyd protests: Police arrest man accused of assaulting teens posting fliers on DC trail

Authorities have arrested four Minneapolis police officers on suspicion of killing George Floyd, whose death on May 25 sparked global outrage and prompted nationwide protests against police brutality.

Former officer Derek Chauvin has been charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death. Three other officers -- identified as Thomas Lane, J.A. Kueng and Tou Thao -- were charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.

Floyd died on Memorial Day after he was detained for questioning regarding a possible forgery in progress. Video of his death caught by bystanders and shared on social media showed Chauvin holding his knee to Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes as Floyd pleaded for air.

Live updates for Friday, June 5 continue below:

School leader out after Facebook comments about George Floyd

Update 10:40 p.m. EDT June 5: A school board near Lansing voted to fire its superintendent Friday after he partly blamed George Floyd for his fatal encounter with police.

The Grand Ledge school board heard hours of public comment during a special meeting, the Lansing State Journal reported.

Brian Metcalf will be placed on paid leave until his dismissal is finalized.

Metcalf had said on Facebook that Floyd’s death in Minneapolis was “wrong.” But he also said “it all starts with being a law abiding citizen,” and that Floyd was suspected of using counterfeit money.

Metcalf, who is white, had apologized and said he would undergo diversity training. The school board appeared to accept it earlier this week, but opposition in the community grew.

“As the leader of our school system, Dr. Metcalf’s ignorance has left our school district and community tarnished by making tone-deaf remarks about a socially charged topic,” said Greg Almy, leader of the teachers union.

Floyd, who was black and handcuffed, died May 25 after a white Minneapolis police officer used his knee to pin down Floyd’s neck for several minutes while he gasped for air.

Police arrest man accused of assaulting teens posting fliers on DC trail

Update 9:40 p.m. EDT June 5: A Maryland man has been arrested and charged with three counts of second degree assault.

Maryland-National Capital Park Police arrested Anthony Brennan III, 60 of Kensington, Maryland.

Video appeared to show him violently grab an object from a young adult who was posting signs protesting the death of George Floyd, park police said.

Police said the incident occurred Monday on the Capital Crescent Trail. The trail runs along MacArthur Boulevard in northwest Washington D.C. and into Montgomery County in Maryland.

The 34-second video shows a cyclist walk up to a young adult. Someone yells, “She has nothing, do not touch her sir!” but the man grabs her arm for several seconds and wrestles an object from her.

The cyclist was then shown picking up his bicycle, running with it toward the person shooting the video and forcing him to the ground.

It was not immediately clear whether Brennan has an attorney who could comment on the charges.

Black cops feel pain of Floyd’s death, duty to their uniform

Update 8:30 p.m. EDT June 5: Black police officers find themselves torn between two worlds: They feel the pain of seeing yet another black man killed at the hands of fellow officers, yet they must also try to keep the peace during angry protests fueled by that death.

Those feelings, familiar to many blacks in law enforcement for years, have never been more intense than in the days since the death of George Floyd. The 46-year-old black man died in Minneapolis after a white officer pressed his knee into his neck for several minutes even after Floyd stopped moving and pleading for air as other officers watched.

“My emotion, my fervor is no less than those people on the streets,” said New York City police Detective Felicia Richards, who is black. “I stand in this uniform, and I understand what my obligation is to this uniform, but I can’t compromise my humanity.”

Richards, president of the NYPD Guardians Association, a fraternal organization, said she was horrified by the video that captured Floyd’s arrest and final moments. She struggled to understand what could possibly have warranted such “brute force.”

Floyd, who was laid off from his job as a bouncer when Minnesota shut down restaurants as part of a stay-at-home order during the coronavirus pandemic, was being arrested May 25. A convenience store worker had accused him of using counterfeit money. Floyd was handcuffed and did not appear to be resisting the officers.

Black police officers who saw the footage “let out a sigh of disgust and abandonment right there,” Richards said. “When we saw that man was not moving, we have to answer to the community.”

Richards, a 34-year veteran of the NYPD, said the toll on officers’ mental health runs deep. They cannot grieve with the rest of the black America, and many of them must meet a seething public.

The National Black Police Association was blunt in its assessment of Floyd’s death and how law enforcement has historically treated black citizens.

“Let’s speak truths: In America, it is clear that the humanity of black people appears invisible to law enforcement,” it said in a statement. “What other explanation would there be for (Minneapolis Police Officer Derek) Chauvin to lean on the neck of a handcuffed black man until he dies?”

NFL Commissioner encourages players 'to speak out and peacefully protest’ in video statement

Update 6:45 p.m. EDT June 5: In a video statement, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell admitted the league was wrong for not listening to players earlier and encouraged all to speak out and peacefully protest.

It has been a difficult time for our country. In particular, black people in our country. First, my condolences to the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and all the families who have endured police brutality.

We, the National Football League, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of black people.

We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest.

We, the National Football League, believe Black Lives Matter.

I personally protest with you and want to be a part of the much needed change in this country.

Without black players there would be no National Football League. And the protests around the country are emblematic of the centuries of silence, inequality and oppression of black players, coaches, fans and staff.

We are listening, I am listening, and I will be reaching out to players who have raised their voices and others on how we can improve and move forward together for a better and more united NFL family.

Protesters take police reform demands to S. Carolina capitol

Update 6 p.m. EDT June 5: Hundreds of protesters against police violence marched downtown from the South Carolina Governor’s Mansion to the state capitol Friday to present a list of demands to reform the state’s criminal justice system.

The demonstration marked the end of a week of protests in Columbia and statewide that were spurred by the May 25 death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who pleaded for air as a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee against his neck for several minutes.

Speakers at the demonstration presented a list of reforms, including requiring all law enforcement to use body cameras at all times, banning the purchasing of military-grade weapons by local agencies, and requiring de-escalation training for officers.

Mayor downplays rough police treatment of NYC protesters

Update 5 p.m. EDT June 5: Another day of protests over the death of George Floyd brought more examples of New York City officials downplaying or denying the police department’s rough treatment of protesters — even when it was caught on video.

Mayor Bill de Blasio on Friday said he had personally seen “no use of force around peaceful protests” and cast doubt on people who had, belying social media posts and witness accounts of officers moving on demonstrators without provocation and bashing them with batons.

De Blasio made the comment in response to questions at his morning news briefing about teams of officers aggressively breaking up a rally in the Bronx as the city’s 8 p.m. curfew kicked in Thursday, leading to scores of arrests and cries of brutality. He said officers were using “lots of restraint” with protesters.

“What an absolute disgrace. This is just not true,” City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer tweeted afterward. “You are gaslighting an entire City.”

Protesters marched through the city again Friday by the thousands. The violent flareups that characterized some demonstrations last weekend have almost entirely given way to peaceful affairs. Looting that occurred on Sunday and Monday also appears to have ceased.

Police, community members kneel together to pray in Orlando, Florida

Update 3:50 p.m. EDT June 5: Police Chief Orlando Rolon of the Orlando, Florida, Police Department on Friday asked community members to take a knee and pray for law enforcement officers, those in pain and for everyone to come together in peace, WFTV reported.

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Georgia faith leaders urge lawmakers to pass hate crime bill

Update 3:45 p.m. EDT June 5: A group of faith leaders across Georgia are calling on lawmakers to pass a hate crime bill, WSB-TV reported.

The news station noted that the state is one of only four without a hate crime law.

Tony Lankford, pastor of First Baptist Church of St. Simons’ Island, said now is the time to pass hate crime legislation, WSB-TV reported.

“You have a responsibility to the citizens of Georgia and an opportunity to make Georgia a better place to live for all generations to come,” Lankford said.

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‘Now is not the time to stay silent’: Carolina Panthers players join marches

Update 3:30 p.m. EDT June 5: A group of Carolina Panthers joined protests in uptown Charlotte over police brutality following the killing of George Floyd, WSOC-TV reported Friday.

Shaq Thompson, Chris Manhertz, Andrew Smith, Tre Boston and Ian Thomas were among those marching for change Tuesday, according to WSOC-TV.

“For those demanding change, now is not the time to stay silent, no matter your station in life." Manhertz said. “No matter what you have to lose.”

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Ohio guardsman suspended amid FBI investigation into white supremacist posts

Update 3:10 p.m. EDT June 5: State authorities and officials with the FBI are investigating a member of the Ohio National Guard who had been deployed to Washington D.C., WHIO-TV reported.

”A member of the Ohio national guard was removed from the mission in Washington, D.C., after the FBI uncovered information that this guardsman expressed white supremacist ideology on the internet prior to this assignment,” Gov. Mike DeWine said in a news briefing Friday, according to WHIO-TV.

The guardsman has been suspended.

“This is an investigation being done, not by authorities in Ohio, but by the Federal Bureau of Investigation,” the governor said, WHIO-TV reported.

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Boston University to create center for antiracist research

Update 2:45 p.m. EDT June 5: School officials with Boston University announced they will soon be launching a center for antiracist research, according to WFXT.

The news station reported that plans for the program have been more than a year in the making. The announcement comes at a time where race and discrimination issues are at the forefront.

School officials told WFXT that they hope this will transform how racial research is done.

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Atlanta police officer charged in Tasing of students also tied to death of man shot 76 times by police

Update 2:40 p.m. EDT June 5: One of the six Atlanta police officers charged after a violent confrontation with two college students during protests over the weekend is also under investigation in connection with a 2016 shooting that left a man dead, WSB-TV reported.

A video posted on social media and body camera footage showed officers use Taser stun guns on two students, Messiah Young and Taniyah Pilgrim, while they sat in their car Saturday. The officers then forcefully dragged them out of the car and arrested them.

Willie Sauls,a 27-year veteran of the Atlanta Police Department, was serving on a federal task force in 2016 when members of the task force shot and killed Jamarion Rashad Robinson, 26, according to WSB-TV. Authorities said he matched the description of a person who had pointed a gun at Atlanta police officers days earlier. Autopsy reports showed Robinson had been shot 76 times, WSB-TV reported.

Sauls is facing charges of aggravated assault and property damage in connection with last weekend’s situation, according to WSB-TV.

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Police union criticizes mayor for call to fire, prosecute officers after Manuel Ellis’ death

Update 2:20 p.m. EDT June 5: The police union in Tacoma, Washington, on Friday sent a letter to Mayor Victoria Woodards criticizing her decision to call for the firing and prosecution of four officers involved in the death of Manuel Ellis, KIRO-TV reported.

Tacoma Police Union Local No. 6 President Chris Tracy said Woodards passed judgment on the officers without “an ounce of evidence” on the basis of less than a minute of short, blurry video posted on Twitter, according to KIRO-TV.

Tracy said the union welcomes a full and fair investigation by the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department and a review by the prosecuting attorney. He added that the facts will show the public that the officers did nothing wrong.

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Most Americans believe Trump has fueled racial tensions, new poll finds

Update 1:35 p.m. EDT June 5: Just over two-thirds of Americans believe President Donald Trump has helped to increase racial tensions since George Floyd was killed in an encounter with Minneapolis police, according to an NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll released Friday.

Interviewers surveyed 1,062 Americans as part of the poll, asking about Trump’s performance, the aftermath of Floyd’s killing and the November election.

Asked whether Trump has increased or decreased racial tensions in his response to the May 25 killing of Floyd, 67% of respondents said he “mostly increased tensions” while 18% said he has mostly decreased them and 15% said they were unsure.

>> Read full results from the NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll

Trump has been criticized for his response to Floyd’s killing, including the decision for federal officials to clear protesters gathered near the White House with tear gas to allow for the president to do a photo-op at St. Johns Episcopal Church. Critics have questioned the difference between his reaction to protests at state capitols demanding that government reopen businesses closed by the coronavirus and his response to the recent protests over police brutality that have gripped the nation.

On social media, Trump urged governors to listen to protesters, who were mostly white, who demonstrated to reopen businesses while calling protesters demonstrating against racially based police violence “thugs.”

Minneapolis to ban chokeholds by police

Update 1:20 p.m. EDT June 5: Negotiators for the city of Minneapolis have agreed with the state to ban the use of chokeholds by police, and to require police to report and intervene any time they see an unauthorized use of force by another officer.

The moves are part of a stipulation between the city and the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, which launched a civil rights investigation this week in response to the death of George Floyd in police custody. The City Council is expected to approve the agreement Friday.

The agreement, which will be enforceable in court, would require any officer, regardless of tenure or rank, to immediately report the use of any neck restraint or chokehold from the scene to their commander or their commander’s superiors.

Similarly, any officer who sees another officer commit any unauthorized use of force, including any chokehold or neck restraint, must try to intervene verbally and even physically. If they don’t, they’d be subject to discipline as severe as if they themselves had used the prohibited force.

The agreement also requires authorization from the police chief or a designated deputy chief to use crowd control weapons, including chemical agents, rubber bullets, flash-bangs, batons, and marking rounds. And it requires more timely decisions on disciplining officers.

Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian resigns from board, urges seat be filled by Black candidate

Update 12:55 p.m. EDT June 5: Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian announced in a video posted on social media Friday that he’s resigned from his position on the website’s board and asked that the seat be filled by a Black candidate.

“It is long overdue to do the right thing," Ohanian said. “I’m doing this for me, for my family and for my country. I am saying this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks, ‘What did you do?’”

Ohanian married tennis superstar Serena Williams in 2017. The couple welcomed their daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian, that same year.

Ohanian pledged to use future funds gained from his Reddit stock “to serve the Black community, chiefly to curb racial hate.” He said he started Friday with a $1 million donation to former San Francisco 49er Colin Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights Camp.

“I believe resignation can actually be an act of leadership from people in power right now,” Ohanian said. "To everyone fighting to fix our broken nation: Do not stop.”

DC paints huge Black Lives Matter mural near White House

Update 12:35 p.m. EDT June 5: City workers and activists painted the words Black Lives Matter in enormous bright yellow letters on the the street leading to the White House, a highly visible sign of the District of Columbia’s embrace of a protest movement that has put it at odds with President Donald Trump.

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser tweeted aerial video of the mural shortly after it was completed Friday.

The letters and an image of the city’s flag stretch across 16th Street for two blocks, ending just before the church where Trump staged a photo-op after federal officers forcibly cleared a peaceful demonstration to make way for the president and his entourage.

“The section of 16th street in front of the White House is now officially ‘Black Lives Matter Plaza,’” Bowser tweeted. A black and white sign was put up to mark the change.

Nearly 84,000 National Guard members activated amid civil unrest, COVID-19

Update 12:05 p.m. EDT June 5: Officials with the U.S. National Guard said Friday that nearly 84,000 soldiers and airmen have been activated due to civil unrest in the wake of the killing of George Floyd and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Officials said 37,400 National Guard members were assisting states as they respond to the threat of COVID-19. More than 41,500 members of the National Guard were on duty in 33 states and Washington D.C. as protests over police brutality continue across the country.

“The hardest mission we do is responding in times of civil unrest,” Air Force Gen. Joseph Lengyel, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said Friday in a statement. “As a uniformed member of America’s military, it breaks my heart to see the country I love in such pain.”

Section of street in front of White House renamed to Black Lives Matter Plaza, mayor announces

Update 11:45 a.m. EDT June 5: A stretch of 16th Street in front of the White House on Friday officially became Black Lives Matter Plaza.

The change was announced by Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, who has been critical of the federal response to protests in the city.

Earlier this week, federal authorities used tear gas to clear peaceful protesters from a park near the White House to allow for the president to walk across the street for a photo-op at St. Johns Episcopal Church. The move was widely criticized by current and former members of the military among several others.

Officials in Washington said they were not alerted before the situation began. Bowser earlier this week used the incident to highlight the fight for D.C. statehood.

Trump says ‘this is a great day’ for George Floyd as protests continue across US

Update 11:20 a.m. EDT June 5: President Donald Trump said Friday that he hopes George Floyd, the 46-year-old killed by Minneapolis police last week, would be glad to see the May jobs report, which showed lower unemployment than expected amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“Hopefully George is looking down right now and saying ‘This is a great thing that’s happening for our country,’” the president said during a news conference. “This is a great day for him. It’s a great day for everybody.”

Floyd died last week after then-Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee to Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes as three other police officers, Thomas Lane, J.A. Kueng and Tou Thao, watched or actively helped to hold him down, according to prosecutors.

‘You have to dominate the streets,’ Trump says amid nationwide protests over police brutality

Update 11 a.m. EDT June 5: Speaking Friday at a news conference, President Donald Trump praised his impact on the Black community in America and repeated previous comments about dominating protesters who have taken to the streets to protest police violence in recent days.

“You have to dominate the streets,” Trump said. “You can’t let what’s happening happen.”

Trump faced heavy criticism earlier this week after authorities used tear gas to clear protesters from Washington D.C.'s Lafayette Square, across the street from the White House, before the president walked across the street for a photo-op with a bible at St. Johns Episcopal Church.

The president praised the work of law enforcement officials amid the protests and added that “Nobody’s ever done for the Black community what President Trump has done.”

DC mayor asks for federal law enforcement, military to withdraw from city

Update 9:40 a.m. EDT June 5: Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser has shared a letter sent to President Donald Trump on Thursday requesting that federal law enforcement and military personnel leave the city as protests over the death of George Floyd continue.

“The protesters have been peaceful, and last night, the Metropolitan Police Department did not make a single arrest,” Bowser said in the letter, which she shared Friday on social media.

“The deployment of federal law enforcement personnel and equipment are inflaming demonstrators and adding to the grievances of those who, by and large, are peacefully protesting for change and for reforms to the racist and broken systems that are killing Black Americans.”

Tacoma mayor calls for firing of officers in death of man while in police custody

Update 8:26 a.m. EDT June 5: Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards called Friday for the firing of all four officers involved in the death of Manuel Ellis, ruled a homicide early Friday by the county medical examiner.

Ellis, 33, died while restrained in handcuffs on the ground.

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Previously unreleased video footage surfaced late Thursday, showing Tacoma officers beating Ellis on the side of the road.

“Tonight, [(the family]) asked, why does it always take a video for the public to believe when a black person’s life is taken unjustly? As an African American woman, I didn’t need a video to believe,” Woodards said in a video statement, adding, “As I watched that video I became even more enraged and angered and disappointed.”

She then demanded Tacoma’s city manager fire all four officers involved and that funds for body cameras be allocated immediately.

According to the Pierce County medical examiner ruling, Ellis died of respiratory arrest due to hypoxia, a lack of oxygen reaching body tissues, which was due to is being physically restrained by officers, The Washington Post reported.

Video vindicates Philadelphia student charged with assaulting police

Update 5:24 a.m. EDT June 5: A Temple University student arrested for assaulting police during a Philadelphia protest Monday has been vindicated by video of the incident.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Evan Gorski was accused of pushing an officer off his bike and fracturing his hand during a confrontation between police and demonstrators protesting police brutality. Video released Wednesday instead showed an officer striking Gorski with a baton, while another officer pinned the 21-year-old engineering student’s face to the ground.

Gorski was released Wednesday.

2 National Guardsmen injured in DC lightning strike

Update 4:38 a.m. EDT June 5: A lightning strike in Washington, D.C.’s Lafayette Square injured two National Guardsmen around midnight Thursday.

Both guardsmen were transported to a nearby hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries, Vito Maggiolo, a spokesman for the district’s Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department, said via Twitter.

There were no other reports of injuries associated with the strike.

NYC mayor: Essential workers’ arrests after curfew are ‘NOT acceptable and must stop’

Update 4:38 a.m. EDT June 5: New York Mayor Bill de Blasio implored police to safeguard the rights of essential workers after viral videos recorded late Thursday showed the arrest of a food delivery worker out past the city’s 8 p.m. curfew.

In one video, a man is seen holding an insulated backpack from a food delivery company. A bicycle is splayed at his feet, and at least six officers have him surrounded.

“Are you serious? Look, look, look I’m not even doing anything,” the man can be heard shouting, while officers tell him to “relax” and begin removing his backpack.

A second video shared a few minutes later shows the unidentified man being loaded into a police van.

NYPD officials told The Washington Post the man’s credentials were later verified at a nearby precinct, and he was released.

California mayor resigns after sending email claiming local police never killed a ‘good person of color’

Update 4:11 a.m. EDT June 5: The mayor of Temecula, California, resigned late Thursday after sending an email earlier in the week that claimed local police had never killed a “good person of color.”

The email, sent by Mayor James “Stew” Stewart Tuesday night, was in response to a constituent asking what his administration is doing to address systemic racism in policing. After the communication was made public, Stewart claimed talk-to-text software had mistakenly added the word “good,” The Press-Enterprise reported.

“As you know the City of Temecula does not have its own Police Department. We contract with Riverside County Sheriff’s Department. And I don’t believe there’s ever been a good person of color killed by a police officer. So I’m kind of confuse what you are looking for,” the email read.

Stewart said he failed to proofread the email before sending after working a 12-hour shift at his barber shop, The Press-Enterprise reported.

In the statement announcing his resignation, Stewart wrote, “City of Temecula, I hear you, I agree with you, and I am deeply sorry,” the newspaper reported.

“I understand that even my sincerest apologies cannot remedy this situation. Because actions speak louder than words, I will step down as your Mayor and City Council Member effective immediately,” he added.

1 shot, 2 possibly injured near Denver protest

Update 2:41 a.m. EDT June 5: A chaotic scene unfolded in Denver Thursday night after a man was shot one block away from protesters gathered near the capitol building.

Denver Police confirmed one man had been shot and transported to a nearby hospital, but they offered no additional details on his condition or possible motivations for the shooting.

Two other “walk-in” patients – one with a gunshot wound and another suffering stab wounds – arrived at the hospital a short time later, but a police spokesman told The Washington Post that officers have not confirmed if those injuries are connected to the shooting of the first unidentified man.

2 Buffalo police officers suspended after video shows them pushing, injuring elderly man

Update 2:27 a.m. EDT June 5: Two police officers in Buffalo, New York, have been suspended without pay after video of protests appears to show them knocking down a 75-year-old man.

WARNING: Links in this post may contain video some readers might find disturbing due to its violent nature.

The video shows the man being pushed by officers and then falling backward. The victim appears to bleed from his head while lying motionless on the ground.

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said in a Thursday night statement he was “deeply disturbed” by video of the altercation and an immediate investigation has been launched by the city’s police commissioner.

According to The Washington Post, officers who were not directly involved but witnessed the incident initially described the man as “tripping and falling,” but Brown launched his investigation immediately upon viewing the footage.

Capt. Jeff Rinaldo with the Buffalo Police Department told the Post the victim is in stable condition with a laceration and possible concussion.

"After days of peaceful protests and several meetings between myself, police leadership and members of the community, tonight’s event is disheartening. My thoughts are with the victim tonight,” Brown said in the statement.

Meanwhile, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo called the incident “unjustified and utterly disgraceful.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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