A black man says that one of the Minneapolis police officers involved in the death of George Floyd punched and kicked him until his teeth were knocked out during an incident in 2014.
Lamar Ferguson received a settlement of $25,000 from the city when a lawsuit was settled out of court..
Ferguson told how he was attacked by officer Tou Thao, who was seen on video while his partner, Derek Chauvin, pressed his knee onto the neck of Floyd until he passed out while they were arresting him on Monday evening.
Floyd died shortly after the arrest. Police claimed he was resisting arrest after they were called to the scene about a forgery in progress at a local deli in Minneapolis.
Video of Floyd, 46, pleading with Chauvin, saying ‘I can’t breathe,’ circulated online and sparked outrage nationwide.
Floyd’s death and his arrest has prompted scrutiny of the officers involved, including Thao.
Lamar Ferguson (left) says he was arrested and beaten by two police officers in 2014 – one of whom was Tou Thao (right), who was one of four cops involved in the arrest of George Floyd
Floyd, 44, died in police custody on Monday after he was arrested by officers for alleged forgery
Mayor Jacob Frey has called for the white officer who knelt on Floyd’s neck to be criminally charged on Wednesday. Derek Chauvin (pictured) was seen pinning him down in video footage that was widely shared on Tuesday
Floyd was filmed Monday begging the Minneapolis cop to stop and telling him he could not breathe before he lost consciousness and later died
Ferguson told The Sun on Thursday that he was traumatized by an encounter with Thao and another officer, Robert Thunder, in October 2014.
He said he and his girlfriend, Brittany, who was eight months pregnant at the time, were leaving a hospital and walking through an alleyway just a few blocks from where Floyd was arrested.
Ferguson says he and his girlfriend were then stopped by the two officers.
He told The Sun the officers stopped him because they claimed he appeared ‘suspicious.’
When Thao and Thunder asked Ferguson to hand over his weapons, Ferguson told them he wasn’t armed.
‘They had no reason to stop me, they started asking me a whole bunch of questions, where I was going,’ Ferguson said.
‘They didn’t find no drugs or any weapons.
‘[Thao] was the most aggressive one, I was in handcuffs within the first few minutes of the incident. I was horrified.
‘I was still in the alleyway, they started swinging me around and slammed me on the ground.’
Ferguson, 33, alleges that Thunder climbed on top of him while Thao started to punch and kick him.
Ferguson’s girlfriend stood helpless a few feet away, watching the incident unfold.
Thao claimed in his deposition that he and Thunder arrested Ferguson because of an outstanding warrant.
The officer said he began punching him after his hand slipped out of the handcuffs.
According to Ferguson’s lawsuit against the two officers, there was no outstanding warrant issued for Ferguson as his name did not appear when the cops ran it through the National Crime Information Center database.
Ferguson was taken to the hospital by the police. From there, he was hauled off to jail wearing only a t-shirt and underwear.
Ferguson filed a lawsuit against Thao and another officer, Robert Thunder (pictured above)
He had refused police requests to get dressed, according to the lawsuit.
Ferguson says the beating left him with several injuries, including busted teeth, damage to his face, back and shoulders, and psychological scars.
‘I was hospitalized for four days,’ he said.
‘I had a major sublux to my face, I got four stitches and had to wear a brace for two weeks.
‘I was terrified of being around police officers, I had to speak to a therapist, I didn’t like the sound of handcuffs, or the sound of keys, I had night sweats for a long time.’
Prosecutors charged Ferguson with assaulting the two police officers, but he was later cleared of the charges at trial.
In 2017, an attorney filed a lawsuit on Ferguson’s behalf.
The lawsuit obtained by DailMail.com states ‘Defendant Thunder and Defendant Thao’s use of unreasonable force on Plaintiff, in the form of punches, kicks, and knees to the face and body while Plaintiff was defenseless and handcuffed, was so extreme that it caused Plaintiff to suffer broken teeth as well as other bruising and trauma.’
The case was settled out of court for $25,000 after Thao said he had punched Ferguson after he ‘actively resisted arrest’.
A fatal shooting and lawsuit for excessive force: What we know about the four officers fired for George Floyd’s arrest
The white police officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck has already been investigated over three police shootings and a fatal car chase.
In 2006 Derek Chauvin, 44, was one of six officers connected to the death of Wayne Reyes.
Reyes, 42 was killed by officers after allegedly pulling a shotgun on the six cops, which included Chauvin.
Two years later Chauvin was investigated for his role in the 2008 shooting of Ira Latrell Toles during a domestic assault call.
Toles was wounded after police said he went for an officer’s gun and Chauvin shot him.
And in 2011 23-year-old Leroy Martinez was shot and injured during a chase given by officers including Chauvin.
Tou Thao, was part of a $25,000 out of court settlement after being sued for using excessive force in 2017.
A lawsuit obtained by the DailyMail.com shows Thao was sued for using excessive force in arrest where he was accused of punching and kicking a handcuffed suspect ‘until his teeth broke’.
The remaining two officers have been identified as Thomas Lane and J Alexander Kueng.
Both were reportedly rookie cops who were still in their probationary periods, according to the StarTribune.
He wrote: ‘After — at this point he’s actively resisting arrest. He — so I had no choice but to punch him. I punched him in the face.’
Thao had been the subject of six complaints, five of which resulted in no disciplinary action. One of the complaints remains open.
Thao, Chauvin, and two other officers involved in Floyd’s arrest – Thomas Lane and J Alexander Kueng – were fired by the Minneapolis Police Department.
Chauvin, 44, the white police officer who knelt on Floyd’s neck, has already been investigated over three police shootings and a fatal car chase.
In 2006, he was one of six officers connected to the death of Wayne Reyes.
Reyes, 42, was killed by officers after allegedly pulling a shotgun on the six cops, which included Chauvin.
The chief prosecutor of Hennepin County at the time, current Senator Amy Klobuchar, declined to prosecute Chauvin and the other officers.
The shooting took place while Klobuchar was in the midst of her campaign for the United States Senate.
Klobuchar, who recently ended her candidacy for the Democratic nomination for president, is considered one of the leading contenders to be Joe Biden’s vice presidential pick.
Two years later Chauvin was investigated for his role in the 2008 shooting of Ira Latrell Toles during a domestic assault call.
Toles was wounded after police said he went for an officer’s gun and Chauvin shot him.
In 2011, 23-year-old Leroy Martinez was shot and injured during a chase given by officers including Chauvin.
Ferguson, a property manager, told The Sun that he saw the video of Floyd’s arrest. He said seeing Thao again brought back unpleasant memories.
‘When I first saw the officer, it was an eerie feeling, I didn’t like that,’ he said.
‘I hope he gets what he deserves, he was so aggressive [with me].
‘If that was a citizen, he’d be in jail already. They need to go where they would put us.
‘I’m sorry that it happened, and I hope everyone comes together as one.
‘There needs to be a new police policy and training policy…
‘At least people know this wasn’t the first time this has happened, and it’s not the first officer to have done this.’
DailyMail.com has contacted Minneapolis police for comment and for the officers’ full records with the department.
Chauvin is said to be represented by lawyer Tom Kelly.
He was Jeronimo Yavez’ attorney after the Minnesota police officer fatally shot Philando Castile during a traffic stop in 2016.
Yavez was found not guilty on all three charges by a jury in 2017.
The remaining two officers, Lane and Kueng, were reportedly rookie cops who were still in their probationary periods, according to the StarTribune.
The FBI and state law enforcement authorities have launched an investigation into Floyd’s death.
Minneapolis cops in riot gear last night fired rubber bullets and tear gas at thousands of defiant protesters who took to the streets to demand justice for Floyd and protesters began to gather Tuesday for a second day of demonstrations.
The victim’s heartbroken family have called for the cops to be charged with murder.
Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo announced on Tuesday that four officers are now ‘former employees’ of the force.
‘We know there are inherent dangers in the profession of policing but the vast majority of the work we do never require the use of force,’ Arradondo said.
Floyd’s death has caused outrage across America with political figures and celebrities including Cardi B, P Diddy and Demi Lovato voicing their anger.
Floyd worked as a security guard at Conga Latin Bistro, a local bistro in Minneapolis.
The bar’s owners have described him as a ‘very calm, nice guy’ who was not the type to be ‘aggressive’ or ‘disrespectful’.
Ben Crump, the attorney for the victim’s family has demanded officers face murder charges over the killing and said this is ‘worse than Eric Garner’ because the officers held Floyd down by the neck for eight minutes.
Crump pointed to the similarities in the case with the death of unarmed black man Garner who died in 2014 after he was placed in a chokehold by New York City police and pleaded for his life, saying he could not breathe.
Minneapolis mayor declares a state of emergency as rioting breaks out for the third night while NYPD cops brawl with protesters in the Big Apple and shots are fired in Denver
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey has declared a state of emergency as rioting breaks out for the third night in the city while protests over Floyd’s death spread across America.
Frey’s office declared a local emergency Thursday night due to civil disturbances after the National Guard and state troopers were drafted in and fires broke out again in stores across the city.
The announcement came as prosecutors warned Thursday there is ‘evidence that does not support criminal charges’ in the case of four cops accused of killing Floyd, sparking fears that the police officers will continue to walk free.
Minneapolis, Minnesota: A car was torched in the third day of riots over Floyd’s death
Minneapolis, Minnesota: There were scenes of destruction in the city Thursday night as Floyd’s death sparked outrage
Minneapolis, Minnesota: A man throws a mannequin onto a burning car in the parking lot of a Target store
Minneapolis, Minnesota: A police officer stands in a cloud of tear gas during the protest
Minneapolis, Minnesota: Fires broke out again in stores and cars across the city
Break-off protests over Floyd’s death are building, with NYPD officers seen brawling on the ground with protesters as at least 40 people were arrested in the Big Apple.
In Denver, panic erupted when shots were fired at the Colorado State Capitol where hundreds had marched to demand justice over Floyd’s death.
Floyd’s death has sparked outrage, after footage surfaced Monday showing Chauvin kneeling on the black man’s neck for eight minutes until he passed out and later died.
Authorities had claimed Floyd resisted arrest but new footage Wednesday cast fresh doubt on those claims, showing two cops forcibly removing him from his car and him appearing to comply with officers.
Protesters in Minneapolis started gathering in the streets for a third day Thursday.
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz activated the National Guard to the city and state troopers have been called in as it braces for another night of violence.
Frey called for the declaration of emergency as the city requested assistance from the state in ‘restoring safety and calm due to the civil disturbance’.
The emergency declaration will stay in place for 72 hours and allows officials to deploy emergency regulations with immediate effect.
Protesters came out for a third day Thursday in what has been escalating levels of violence and chaos across the city.
Footage showed the Target store being the location for much of the rioting for another day as rioters were seen hurling the retailer’s shopping karts at a police cruiser in the store parking lot.
As night fell, a man was pictured throwing a mannequin onto a burning car in the parking lot as smoke filled the city.
Police in riot gear hit out at protesters again with tear gas sprayed into the crowds.
In the nearby St. Paul’s region of Minnesota, rioters threw rocks and stones at a cop car and it was left smashed up with a tree branch ripping through the windows.
Protests ramped up across the nation Thursday as anger grows that four days on from Floyd’s death no arrests have been made.
Things turned ugly in the Big Apple as protesters and NYPD officers clashed in Manhattan, New York City.
New York City, New York: A protester is detained by police during a rally against the death of Minneapolis man George Floyd
New York City, New York: Things turned ugly in Union Square in the Big Apple with scenes of NYPD officers and protesters clashing
New York City, New York: A woman is one of around 40 people arrested by police officers in Manhattan
New York City, New York: Officers pin a protester to the floor at the Black Lives matter protest Thursday
More than 40 people were arrested when the demonstration in Union Square descended into violence.
The NYPD said several cops had been attacked by demonstrators, according to Newsweek.
One officer was reportedly hit with a garbage can that was hurled at them by a demonstrator while several protesters allegedly spat on the cops.
Police said one of the protestors was arrested for brandishing a knife while another tried to take a police officer’s gun from their holster.
‘We have over 40 people that are arrested right now in regards to this ongoing demonstration,’ an NYPD spokesperson told Newsweek.
‘We have multiple officers that have been attacked. We have one officer that was hit with a garbage can and we have another officer who was punched in his face.’
Protesters also accused police of violence towards them, with the Gothamist reporting allegations that one officer but his knee on a protester’s neck – the same restraint that ultimately led to Floyd’s death Monday.
New York City, New York: NYPD officers wear masks at the protest in Manhattan
New York City, New York: NYPD officers were later seen brawling on the ground with protesters and at least 30 people were arrested in the Big Apple
Many demonstrators held aloft banners reading ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘Stop Killing Black People’ while they followed the state’s coronavirus rules to wear face masks.
In Denver, what started as a peaceful march calling for justice over Floyd’s death descended into chaos as shots were fired.
Cops rushed to the scene of the protest at the state Capitol Thursday evening after witnesses reported six or seven shots had been fired at about 5:30 p.m. local time.
Terrified demonstrators were pictured huddled down on the ground fearing there was an active shooter at the event as armed officers ran past.
Denver police said there were no reports of any injuries and no one had been taken into police custody.
Several hundred people had gathered at the state Capitol before marching down Lincoln Street and Broadway where they blocked traffic.
As chaos ensued across America over the black man’s death in police custody, Floyd’s family issued a plea for protests to be peaceful Thursday night.
New York City, New York: The NYPD said several cops had been attacked by demonstrators, according to Newsweek
New York City, New York: One officer was reportedly hit with a garbage can that was hurled at them by a demonstrator while several protesters allegedly spat on the cops
New York City, New York: A demonstrator is pinned to the floor by officers as things turned violent
New York City, New York: Police and a protester tackle each other in the streets of Manhattan
New York City, New York: People held aloft banners reading ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘Stop Killing Black People’ while they followed the state’s coronavirus rules to wear face masks
New York City, New York: Cops said one of the protestors was arrested for brandishing a knife while another tried to take a police officer’s gun from their holster
New York City, New York: Protesters also accused police of violence towards them, with reports that one officer but his knee on a protester’s neck – the same restraint that ultimately led to Floyd’s death Monday
New York City, New York: A sign reads ‘No justice, no peace. All black lives matter’
‘I don’t want them to lash out like that, but I can’t stop people right now because they have pain. They have the same pain that I feel,’ George Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, told CNN Thursday.
‘I want everything to be peaceful, but I can’t make everybody be peaceful. I can’t. It’s hard.’
The family’s lawyer Benjamin Crump issued a statement saying Floyd’s family ‘want peace’ and urged people not to ‘sink to the level of our oppressors’.
‘I spoke with George Floyd’s family this morning and they would like to thank all of the protesters for joining them in standing for JUSTICE. They know we’re all hurting,’ Crump said.
‘They told me they want peace in Minneapolis, but they know that Black people want peace in their souls and that until we get #JusticeForFloyd there will be no peace.’
‘We also cannot sink to the level of our oppressors and we cannot endanger each other as we respond to the necessary urge to raise our voices in unison and in outrage,’ he added. ‘Looting and violence distract from the strength of our collective voice.’
Denver, Colorado: What started as a peaceful march calling for justice over Floyd’s death descended into chaos as shots were fired
Denver, Colorado: A motorist holds their fist out of the sunroof of their vehicle as cars were stopped by protesters
Denver, Colorado: Cops rushed to the scene of the protest at the state Capitol Thursday evening after witnesses reported six or seven shots had been fired at about 5:30 p.m. local time.
Denver, Colorado: Denver police said there were no reports of any injuries and no one had been taken into police custody
Denver, Colorado: Several hundred people had gathered at the state Capitol before marching down Lincoln Street and Broadway where they blocked traffic
Denver, Colorado: People carry placards as they march during a protest outside the State Capitol
Their cries for calm came after Wednesday’s protest escalated into violence with riots breaking out across the city and one looter killed.
Cops and protesters clashed and stores including Target, AutoZone and Walmart were ransacked and set on fire by looters.
A suspected looter was shot dead outside the Cadillac Pawn shop and the suspected shooter had been taken into custody Wednesday night.
Prosecutors warn there is ‘evidence that does not support criminal charge’ in case of four cops accused of killing George Floyd as they say police can use a ‘certain amount of force – but not excessive’
Prosecutors have warned there is ‘evidence that does not support criminal charges’ in the case of four cops accused of killing George Floyd, as they say police can use a ‘certain amount of force – but not excessive’.
At a press conference Thursday, Mike Freeman, county attorney for Hennepin County, condemned the actions of white cop Derek Chauvin as ‘horrific and terrible’, but said prosecutors needed to determine if he used ‘excessive’ force when he knelt on the black man’s neck for eight minutes until he passed out and later died.
‘That video is graphic and horrific and terrible and no person should do that,’ he said.
‘But my job in the end is to prove he violated a criminal statute – but there is other evidence that does not support a criminal charge.’
Mike Freeman, county attorney for Hennepin County, and US Attorney for the District of Minnesota Erica MacDonald dashed hopes that an arrest had been made over the death of the 46-year-old father of two in a press conference Thursday
Freeman pleaded for patience from the Minneapolis community ravaged by Floyd’s death as he warned that the investigation ‘can’t be rushed’ for fear of a repeat of the Freddie Gray case in 2015 where all charges were dropped against cops involved in the black man’s death.
Police officers are allowed to use reasonable force on citizens to restrain them during arrest but the force cannot be ‘excessive’.
Prosecutors must now prove that this force was ‘excessive’ in order to bring criminal charges against Chauvin.
Outrage is building across the nation over how pinning Floyd down by his neck as he gasps for breathe and begs the cop to stop could ever be considered ‘reasonable’.
Freeman did not provide any detail over what the ‘other evidence’ could be that provides a defense for Chauvin’s actions but said his office now had to ‘wade through’ it before charges can be brought.
‘My business is ‘is it criminal?’ and that’s what we have to prove,’ he said.
Freeman said he understood that people want swift action but assured the public that ‘we just can’t rush this’.
He compared the case to the death of 25-year-old Gray in Baltimore in 2015, where Gray fell into a coma and died of a spinal cord injury while in a police van.
Six Baltimore police officers were suspended with pay but all charges were dropped against them and no one was charged.
Officers guard the white cop’s home. Floyd’s death has sparked outrage in Minneapolis, with protesters taking to the streets for a third day Thursday
A protester clashes with police as protests mount across the city Thursday. State troopers have been forced to intervene after violent protests and riots broke out in the city and left one looter dead
‘It was a rush to charge and a rush to justice and all those people were found not guilty,’ he said.
Freeman warned that history could repeat itself with the Floyd case if the investigation is rushed.
‘We have to do this right, we have to prove it in a court of law,’ he said.
‘We can’t rush justice as justice cant be rushed.’
His comments came as authorities dashed hopes that an arrest had been made over the death of the 46-year-old father of two when they called a press conference to announce a development in the investigation Thursday only to leave attendees waiting two hours before finally announcing they had no new developments to share.
‘We thought we would have another development to tell you about… but we don’t,’ admitted US Attorney for the District of Minnesota Erica MacDonald.
She refused to confirm what the ‘development’ would have been but McDonald said ‘it mattered’ and ‘I hope to tell you soon’.
‘I wouldn’t have wasted your time coming here,’ she said.
MacDonald echoed Freeman’s words saying that a ‘police officer in the nature of the job has within their scope of duty the ability to use the right amount of force but not excessive force’.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said on Thursday he believes George Floyd would still be alive today if he had been a white ma
‘That’s what we’re looking at – the issue of excessive force,’ she said.
She sought to reassure Floyd’s family that the investigation into his death is the ‘top priority’ and said that President Trump and US Attorney General Bill Barr are both ‘actively monitoring the investigation’.
The four Minneapolis officers involved in the arrest of George Floyd were fired Tuesday. They were named as Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, Tou Thao, and J Alexander Kueng.
Frey had announced the firings on Twitter, saying: ‘This is the right call.’
Frey said he considers Floyd’s killing to be murder and had publicly called for Chauvin to face arrest.
‘I’m not a prosecutor, but let me be clear. The arresting officer killed someone,’ he told CBS Thursday. ‘He’d be alive today if he were white.’
‘The facts that I’ve seen, which are minimal, certainly lead me down the path that race was involved.’
Source: Daily Mail – Articles