Thursday, January 27th, 2022 pm31 11:35pm

George Floyd updates: UK protesters throw slave trader statue in river

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The death of George Floyd, a black man who died on Memorial Day after he was pinned down by a white Minnesota police officer, has sparked outrage and protests in Minneapolis, across the United States and around the world.

Second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter charges have been filed against Derek Chauvin, the ex-officer who prosecutors say held his knee on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes. The three other officers have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting manslaughter. All four officers have been fired.

Governors in 32 states have activated more than 32,400 members of the National Guard.

Today’s biggest developments:

  • Minneapolis mayor booed after saying he does not support abolishing police
  • Virginia officer charged with 3 counts of misdemeanor assault and battery involving man in crisis
  • St. Louis-area officer suspended after video shows him hitting man with unmarked patrol car
  • Several officers injured due to improvised explosives in Seattle
  • This story is being updated throughout the day. Please check back for updates. All times Eastern.

    3:55 p.m.: Mural of former Philadelphia Mayor Frank Rizzo painted over

    Another memorial to former Philadelphia Mayor Frank Rizzo has been removed.

    A mural depicting the former police commissioner in the city’s Italian Market was painted over on Sunday morning.

    The mural, who many saw as a symbol of police brutality, had been defaced several times in recent years. Mural Arts Philadelphia said it painted over the mural with the consent of the wall owner.

    “We know that the removal of this mural does not erase painful memories and are deeply apologetic for the amount of grief it has caused,” the organization said in a statement on Sunday. “We believe this is a step in the right direction and hope to aid in healing our city through the power of thoughtful and inclusive public art.”

    The organization said it plans to create a new mural with input from the community.

    Last week, a statue of Rizzo near City Hall was removed following vandalism amid the city’s protests.

    1:33 p.m.: National Guard prepares to leave Los Angeles

    The National Guard is leaving Los Angeles after their presence was requested to handle protests.

    The National Guard was activated in Los Angeles and neighboring communities on May 30 after a request from Gov. Gavin Newsom. He had proclaimed a statement of emergency in Los Angeles County amid the protests.

    12:48 p.m.: NYC mayor says NYPD funds will be shifted to youth, social services

    New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a wave of police reforms, including shifting funds from the police department to youth and social services.

    The other measures include reforming 50-A, the state law that keeps police behavior from public scrutiny; move vendor enforcement out of the police; and bring community voices into the senior level of the police.

    “The details will be worked out in the budget process in the weeks ahead. But I want people to understand that we are committed to shifting resources to ensure that the focus is on our young people,” de Blasio said.

    A summary of the New York City budget plan showed that for the 2021 fiscal year, the police department had a budget of $5.6 billion, while the Dept. of Youth and Community Development had a budget of $598 million. The summary showed that the Dept. of Social Services budget for the 2021 fiscal year was $9.6 billion.

    The mayor also highlighted Saturday’s tens of thousands of peaceful protesters who took to the streets across the city.

    12:18 p.m.: Protesters in UK tear down statue of 17th century slave trader

    Protesters against systemic racism in Bristol, United Kingdom, tore down a statue of 17th century slave trader Edward Colston. The protests in the United Kingdom are in response to protests that have erupted in the United States.

    Demonstrators were seen pulling down the statue with a rope before jumping on it.

    The statue was then dragged through the streets of Bristol, according to local media reports, and eventually tossed in the river.

    Historian David Olusoga said that the problem with the statue has long been “that it has not been seen as a problem.” It was erected in 1895, nearly two centuries after he died in 1721.

    “What it shows is that 17th century London and Bristol were involved in the slave trade, but that 19th century Bristol didn’t care that it was honoring a man who had been involved in the slave trade,” Olusoga told the BBC. “This is a city that is 14% BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) with a statue that of somebody who was not just a slave trader, he was involved in the Royal Africa Company, the company that trafficked more people into slavery than any in British history.”

    Colston’s company transported more than 100,000 slaves from West Africa to the Caribbean and the Americas between 1672 and 1689, according to the BBC.

    However, it was only until the 1990s that Colston’s involvement in the slave trade, the source of much of the money which he gave to Bristol, gained more publicity, according to Historic England, a body of the British Government.

    Statues that symbolize the Confederacy, for many a symbol of racism and oppression, in the U.S. have also come down in the wake of the protests that are spreading worldwide.

    10:07 a.m.: Trump says National Guard will withdraw from DC

    President Donald Trump tweeted that the National Guard will begin to withdraw from Washington, D.C. “now that everything is under perfect control.”

    “I have just given an order for our National Guard to start the process of withdrawing from Washington, D.C., now that everything is under perfect control. They will be going home, but can quickly return, if needed. Far fewer protesters showed up last night than anticipated!” Trump tweeted.

    However, thousands of protesters still stepped out in Washington, D.C. on Saturday.

    8:03 a.m.: Portland Police Department arrest 50 protesters in late night demonstrations

    Portland, Oregon, experienced another evening of protests and demonstrations that began much the same as the last several nights with separate groups of demonstrators taking to the streets.

    “At about 10:50 p.m. an unlawful assembly was declared,” the Portland Police Department said in a statement. “The crowd was given ample opportunity to disperse and were warned if they did not do so, they were subject to arrest or force. Officers began dispersing the crowd just after 11:30 p.m. Portland Police, assisted by outside agency mutual aid partners, arrested at least 50 subjects for criminal activity.”

    Information on arrests is still being compiled and an updated release will be published when this information becomes available.

    7:13 a.m.: NYC mayor lifts curfew

    New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has lifted the curfew that had been imposed on the city amid the protests and demonstrations after the death of George Floyd.

    “We are lifting the curfew, effective immediately. Yesterday and last night we saw the very best of our city,” the mayor said in a tweet on Sunday. “Tomorrow we take the first big step to restart. Keep staying safe. Keep looking out for each other.”

    4:21 a.m.: Virginia officer charged with 3 counts of misdemeanor assault and battery involving man in crisis

    The Fairfax County Police Department called a late press conference Saturday night to release details surrounding the arrest of one of the department’s own officers.

    The white officer, Tyler Timberlake, faces three counts of assault and battery related to an on-duty incident that happened Friday.

    Body camera video played at the press conference shows an officer deploying his stun gun on a black man, who was walking away from him at the time. The man seems in the footage to be suffering from some kind of medical episode.

    The man falls to the ground, where the officer proceeds lean on his back with his knees. The officer appears to deploy the stun gun on him again, this time while he’s already face down on the ground. At this point, other officers join the initial officer in pushing the man into the ground, where they force handcuffs onto him.

    At one point, the victim yells: “I can’t breathe.”

    Col. Edwin C. Roessler Jr., the county’s chief of police, said the man “is alive and resting at home with his family.”

    Roessler also says Timberlake, an eight-year veteran of the department, has been relieved of duty. Other officers who were present have also been relieved of duty pending the result of both criminal and administrative investigations.

    Timberlake faces up to 36 months of incarceration.

    2:57 a.m.: St. Louis-area officer suspended after video shows him hitting man with unmarked patrol car

    An officer was suspended and two others were placed on leave after a Ring video camera caught an officer driving into a man and then struggling with him on the ground multiple times.

    Florissant Police Chief Timothy Fagan said the incident happened on June 2 but he only learned about it and saw the video on Saturday. The chief said the FBI and the St. Louis County Police Department are investigating the incident.

    “My gut reaction was I talked to three different agencies to take a look at it because I do have some concerns about it,” Fagan said.

    The man seen being hit in the video was approached because he was in a vehicle matching the description of another car in connection with shots fired outside the Ferguson Police Department.

    Police said no weapons were found on the man and he is facing pending charges for carrying drugs and resisting arrest.

    The man suffered an ankle injury.

    “I’ll tell you what I believe I see in the video which is that the male then gets up and tries to run and then officer tries to take the male into custody and from my view looks like he struck the individual at least two times, he looks like he kicks him and then hits him with a forearm,” Fagan said.

    The incident happened on June 2 around 11:30 p.m. in the 9800 block of Eastdell Drive in the City of Dellwood.

    St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell will not be looking into the case as his spokesperson’s son, an officer, was in the backseat of the car the detective was driving when he hit the man, creating a conflict of interest for Bell.

    The case was turned over to St. Charles County Prosecuting Attorney Tim Lomar as a result.

    Fagan said there is no body or dash camera footage to review.

    The officer that was suspended had been with the department for nine years.

    12:42 a.m.: Several officers injured due to improvised explosives in Seattle

    The Seattle Police Department confirmed that several of their officers were injured after people at a demonstration began throwing rocks and bottles at officers and by setting off improvised explosives.

    The incident occurred at approximately 7:30 p.m. according to the Seattle Police Department, when demonstrators outside the East Precinct began moving barricades without permission and the police asked them multiple times to stop.

    The condition of the officers is not currently known.

    11:14 p.m.: Minneapolis mayor booed after saying he does not support abolishing police

    Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey was booed out of a protest after he said he did not support abolishing the police department.

    A protester asked Frey if he supported defunding the police department, however, he did not answer that question and instead said he “did not support the full abolition of the police.”

    Boos quickly permeated through the crowd and protesters chanted, “Go home Jacob! Go home!”

    Activists have called for defunding police departments in the U.S., often meaning taking money out of the police budget and putting it toward the community. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced such a measure earlier this week.

    ABC News’ Courtney Pomeroy, Alexis Zotos, Abigail Shalawylo, Ahmad Hemingway, Alexandra Faul, Joshua Hoyos and Rashid Haddou-Riffi contributed to this report.


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