Biden’s Department of Justice planned to arrest Derek Chauvin at the courthouse if he was acquitted of the murder of George Floyd in order to put a dampener on any potential riots.
Multiple sources spoke to the Star Tribune on the condition of anonymity, revealing the plan from federal authorities. Chauvin, the former Minneapolis Police officer, was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd in the second and third degree earlier this month. The trial had lasted just under a month, with proceedings starting at the end of March.
If, however, Chauvin ended up being acquitted of all charges relating to the death of Floyd, or if the trial had ended in a mistrial, as others had speculated, the federal government was ready to arrest the former officer right in the courthouse. Chauvin would have then been charged with multiple federal police brutality charges, in an effort to prevent riots from being sparked off in Minneapolis as a result of the verdict.
The plan from federal authorities may come as no surprise to some who have been following the case and the riots across the nation linked to BLM and Antifa over the last year. National File reported that a number of protestors addressed the crowds following Chauvin’s conviction, claiming that the only reason that the result was as it was “is because we showed up” to protest night after night.
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) April 21, 2021
While the plan never had to be enacted due to Chauvin being acquitted, federal prosecutors from the Department of Justice still plan to indict him, along with former officers Kueng, Lane, and Thao, who were also involved in the arrest of Floyd. Each of them would be facing charges relating to the alleged violation of Floyd’s civil rights. The federal case regarding Floyd’s death is currently being built up with a grand jury, a slower process to a criminal complaint, which Chauvin would have been charged under if he had been acquitted.
Chauvin is seemingly also set to be charged federally in relation to the arrest of a 14-year-old boy in 2017, where court documents claim he struck the teen on the head with a flashlight and then grabbed him by the throat. Keung, Lane, and Thao, are all also currently charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter. The trial of the three former officers is set to take place in August.