George Floyd Case: Judge Drops 3rd-Degree Murder Charge Against Ex-Officer


A Hennepin County judge has dropped a third-degree murder charge against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the killing of George Floyd, CNN reports.

According to the outlet, Chauvin still faces charges of second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd's death. Judge Peter Cahill reportedly ruled to drop the charge because the evidence presented by the state did not show that Chauvin's actions were "eminently dangerous" to anyone but Floyd.

In the ruling, Judge Cahill wrote that the charge can "be sustained only in situations in which the defendant's actions were 'eminently dangerous to other persons' and were not specifically directed at the particular person whose death occurred."

Earlier this month, Chauvin was released on a $1million dollar bond from maximum security Oak Park Heights prison in Minnesota, where he had been held since May 31.

The former officer, who was initially charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and manslaughter, was filmed kneeling on Floyd’s neck for about eight minutes during the arrest on May 25. Chauvin as well as three other former officersThomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao — were later fired and charged in Floyd’s death, which sparked national protests over racial injustice over the summer.

The three other officers — Lane, Thao and Kueng — were charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter. The judge upheld those charges, CNN reports.

Chauvin faces up to 40 years in prison if convicted of second-degree murder.

Photo: Getty Images