The Minneapolis police officer who knelt on George Floyd's neck had 18 previous complaints against him, police department says

The former Minneapolis police officer seen in a video with his knee on...

Posted: May 28, 2020 6:14 PM
Updated: May 29, 2020 3:30 PM

The former Minneapolis police officer seen in a video with his knee on George Floyd's neck had 18 prior complaints filed against him with the Minneapolis Police Department's Internal Affairs, according to the police department.

It's unclear what the internal affairs complaints against the officer, Derek Chauvin, were for. MPD did not provide additional details.

Chauvin was arrested Friday and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter, according to the Hennepin County Attorney's Office. Chauvin was fired earlier this week, along with three other MPD officers who were present when Chauvin knelt on Floyd's neck. Police have said they were responding to an alleged forgery at a corner store.

Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who was unarmed and handcuffed, pleaded that he could not breathe. He was soon after declared dead at a nearby hospital, according to authorities.

Floyd's death and video of the incident have sparked widespread anger, destructive protests and calls for the officers involved to face criminal charges.

Only two of the 18 complaints against Chauvin were 'closed with discipline,' according to a MPD internal affairs public summary. In both cases, the 'discipline issued' column indicated that a letter of reprimand had been issued in response.

Chauvin was not the only officer on the scene that day with a history of complaints against him.

Former officer Tou Thao had six complaints filed with internal affairs, one of which was still open, according to the public summary released Thursday. The other five complaints had been closed without discipline.

The two other officers involved had no complaints filed against them, per MPD internal affairs.

CNN has reached out to attorneys representing the officers for comment.

One officer was the subject of a lawsuit

Thao was also part of a 2017 excessive force lawsuit that was settled by the city of Minneapolis, according to a settlement obtained by CNN and an attorney for the plaintiff in the case.

The lawsuit was brought by Lamar Ferguson, who claimed in the suit that Thao and another officer subjected him to 'cruel and unusual' punishment when they arrested him in October 2014.

According to the lawsuit, the officers used 'unreasonable force,' including 'punches, kicks and knees to the face and body while Ferguson was defenseless and handcuffed.' As a result, Ferguson suffered broken teeth, bruising and trauma, the lawsuit says.

The city would go on to pay Ferguson and his attorney $25,000 to settle the lawsuit on December 11, 2017.

Both the city and the officers denied liability in the settlement, according to a 2017 statement from the city of Minneapolis.

According to the lawsuit, Ferguson was walking home from his grandmother's house with his pregnant girlfriend on October 7, 2014, when they were approached by a Minneapolis police car with Thao and another office inside.

The lawsuit claims the officers handcuffed Ferguson despite having no probable cause to believe he had committed a crime.

The officers took Ferguson's wallet and ID and the second officer ran the ID through the National Crime Information Center, a federal database, but no warrant showed up in the system, the lawsuit said.

Despite this, the second officer 'falsely stated that there was a warrant out for Plaintiff's arrest,' the lawsuit states. The officer questioned Ferguson about a previous incident involving people who the officer believed were Ferguson's family members, but Ferguson 'said he had no information to tell the officers.'

A physical altercation broke out, according to the lawsuit, then Thao threw Ferguson to the ground and began hitting him. Thao allegedly lifted Ferguson's head up by grabbing the back of Ferguson's hoodie as the other officer allegedly kicked him in the mouth.

Ferguson was taken to a hospital, but allegedly the officers 'expressed impatience with medical staff caring' for Ferguson. When he was discharged, the officers allegedly threw his discharge papers -- including prescription painkillers -- in the garbage as they left the hospital, the lawsuit states.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313161

Reported Deaths: 3594
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah51245642
Washington34995276
Marion32577393
Clackamas26570271
Lane23989246
Jackson20977257
Deschutes16623102
Umatilla12602125
Douglas10712188
Linn1046886
Josephine8659165
Yamhill744999
Klamath643491
Polk623570
Malheur479467
Benton461927
Coos412069
Columbia324237
Jefferson313746
Lincoln276330
Union272737
Wasco239039
Crook212338
Clatsop211725
Tillamook181523
Baker174421
Morrow167921
Curry166817
Hood River163035
Harney78916
Grant7558
Lake6768
Wallowa50811
Gilliam1374
Sherman1283
Wheeler651
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4644566

Reported Deaths: 68019
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles144512125852
Riverside3579884804
San Diego3495814009
San Bernardino3472035506
Orange3146225354
Sacramento1503072089
Santa Clara1405641841
Fresno1358611888
Kern1358421515
Alameda1162141329
Ventura976901120
San Joaquin973871615
Contra Costa95727924
Stanislaus806991234
Tulare72969896
San Mateo52239607
San Francisco51907605
Monterey49465565
Solano44151312
Santa Barbara43112500
Sonoma39441378
Merced39370535
Placer36487364
Imperial34261755
Kings30124284
San Luis Obispo28300313
Madera21707258
Butte21307230
Shasta20683276
Santa Cruz20151211
Yolo19143239
Marin17106242
El Dorado16004127
Sutter13094153
Napa1226895
Yuba926061
Nevada847685
Humboldt829587
Tehama823784
San Benito709067
Mendocino685575
Lassen637627
Tuolumne615393
Lake603687
Amador492259
Glenn398030
Siskiyou389541
Calaveras342266
Del Norte336034
Colusa290918
Inyo166539
Mono14935
Plumas12406
Mariposa99712
Trinity72010
Modoc6278
Sierra1980
Unassigned1650
Alpine1000
Out of CA00
Medford
Clear
62° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 62°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 93° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 61°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
62° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 62°
Grants Pass
Cloudy
62° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 62°
Klamath Falls
Clear
48° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 48°
Cooler temperatures and thin haze return on the first day of fall
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events