The death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis Police Department custody on Monday evening has sparked bipartisan national outrage, including in the Yellowhammer State.
The situation on-the-ground in Minneapolis has gradually deteriorated since video footage of Floyd’s death surfaced. Four officers have been fired, however no one had — as of Friday morning — been charged. What began as peaceful protests demanding justice for Floyd have escalated into heavily publicized rioting, looting and arson.
President Donald J. Trump on Friday tweeted that the Minnesota National Guard has arrived in the city to get a hold of the situation.
This came shortly after Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth (R-AL) in a social media post warned, “Chaos rules without law and order.”
“The death of George Floyd In Minneapolis was inexcusable and angers me greatly, but we must remember that all but a few officers are dedicated servants who risk their lives daily,” Ainsworth said. “My thanks to those who serve in law enforcement. Your brave service is appreciated. Chaos rules without law and order.”
Earlier in the week, Oxford Police Chief Bill Partridge shared a photo of the since-fired officer who was video taped kneeling on Floyd’s neck, with Partridge saying, “This is not a police officer. This is not American law enforcement. This is someone who has no integrity, honor, emotion, or respect.”
Partridge currently serves as president of the Alabama Association of Chiefs of Police.
“These four people have stained every professional law enforcement officer who swore an oath to protect and defend the communities they serve,” he continued, referring to the former Minneapolis PD officers.
“It is up to every officer, supervisor, and administrator to stand against this type of abuse of power. Each of these four officers will be prosecuted, as they should,” Partridge advised.
“As a police officer, I do not see color; I see human beings with thoughts, feelings and I will be the first to stand and say enough is enough to this type of rogue behavior by anyone,” he added. “To see this type of brutality makes me sick and disgusted. But, I know justice will prevail in this case. We just need to allow the system to work.”
Partridge remarked, “While Americans have the right to peacefully assemble and protest, they do not have the right to riot, loot and destroy innocent people’s property.”
“Please know that 99.9% of American law enforcement officers do the job flawlessly every day and risk their lives doing so. We work extremely hard to make inroads into the community and build strong relationships,” the Alabama police chief concluded.
Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis PD officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck, has been arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter, media outlets reported Friday afternoon.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn