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Mayor Bill de Blasio Thursday called for charges against the Minneapolis cops involved in the death of George Floyd, saying he was “horrified” by the video.
“George Floyd was murdered in broad daylight and the man who killed him was a police officer — and that officer didn’t seem to care at all that he was taking a man’s life,” de Blasio tweeted. “If George was white, he would be alive right now.”
Floyd died Monday in police custody in Minneapolis after he was filmed shouting “I cannot breathe” while an officer detaining him knelt on his kneck as three other cops assisted.
The four cops have been fired as state and federal authorities investigate the death. De Blasio’s “if George was white” comment echoes those of Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, who has called for the arrest of Derek Chauvin, the officer filmed kneeling on Floyd.
“This nation has devalued the lives of Black men for centuries. It has to end. And it will only end when there are consequences for those who do wrong,” de Blasio added in a second tweet. “These officers need to be charged immediately.”
De Blasio’s newfound outspokenness on police violence comes after years of faltering on whether former NYPD cop Daniel Pantaleo should be fired for the death of Eric Garner during his first term in 2014.
While the Police Department ultimately decided to can Pantaleo last year, de Blasio has declined to endorse his dismissal, as demanded by Garner’s family and activists.
“I hope this family doesn’t need to suffer like I suffered for six years,” Garner’s mother, Gwen Carr, told NBC News after Floyd’s death.
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