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George Floyd was infected with corona

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4 Minneapolis cops charged with unintentional second-degree murder

Washington: George Floyd, whose fatal encounter with Minneapolis police stirred a global outcry over racial bias by US law enforcement, tested positive for the coronavirus, his autopsy revealed. The official cause of death, however, was cardiopulmonary arrest while Floyd was being restrained by police taking him into custody on May 25.

An Indian-American businessman, who opened the doors of his home in Washington to over 70 people demonstrating against the custodial killing of George Flyod, has emerged as a hero after he helped some strangers, fed them and made sure they were safe in his house, according to US media reports.

The death of 46-year-old African-American Floyd last week in Minneapolis has led to one of the biggest civic unrest in the history of America.

Prosecutors charged a Minneapolis police officer accused of pressing his knee against George Floyd's neck with a more serious charge of second-degree murder, and for the first time leveled charges against three other officers, issuing warrants for their arrests.

An updated criminal complaint against Derek Chauvin says his actions were a "substantial causal factor in Floyd losing consciousness, constituting substantial bodily harm, and Floyd's death as well."

The unintentional second-degree murder count carries a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison, compared with 25 years for third-degree murder.

"I believe the evidence available to us now supports the stronger charge of second-degree murder," said Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison. The complaints against the other officers accuse them of aiding and abetting Chauvin's actions and of manslaughter.

Widely seen bystander video showing Chauvin pressing his knee into Floyd's neck on May 25 has sparked protests nationwide and around the world against police brutality and discrimination.

All four officers were fired and Chauvin was initially charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. The three other officers involved were not immediately charged, spurring calls from protesters and Floyd's family for them to also face criminal charges.

The unintentional second-degree murder charge alleges that Chauvin caused Floyd's death without intent while committing another felony offense, namely third-degree assault.

For the other defendants — Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao — aiding and abetting is legally tantamount to committing the same acts as Chauvin, so they will face the same penalties if convicted.

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