George Floyd Part 3 of 3-Deductive Conclusions and Forfeited Integrity

 Uncompromising Evaluation

An objective examination has to be detached from the desired outcome or emotional inclination and should only examine the facts and actions as they were observed to have occurred. Then compared to any explanations given when evaluated against these observations will yield the most precise determination of guilt or innocence.

Strictly an uncompromising assessment of the deeds alone removed from the person’s identity performing the act will objectively reveal if the deed was justified regardless of who the doer of the deed may have been.

For the exact purposes of guilt or justification of actions, it is practically irrelevant who committed the act but only if they had a legal right to do so in the manner in which they did. It comes down to right or wrong, proper or improper, no matter who did it, friend or foe. Impartiality demands that if that same set of circumstances existed with you, it would be considered fair and just.

This is the ultimate perspective of neutrality of judgment required concerning the application of the law. With this lens of detachment, the incident can begin to be clarified.

The clerk initiated the encounter requesting a police response in c/w Mr. Floyd passing a counterfeit twenty-dollar bill. The police responded to find Mr. Floyd was located in the driver’s seat of his vehicle. He was removed from the vehicle, placed in cuffs, and escorted to the sidewalk, where he was seated.

He was then escorted across the street without incident but resisted being placed in the rear of the squad car. He claimed to be claustrophobic, a recognized mental disorder of anxiety, but no exclusion from being placed in a squad car or arrested.

A brief struggle of control ensued with Mr. Floyd being resistant to being placed in the rear of the squad car but not actively combative or aggressive toward the policemen. His practical intent was not to be placed in the squad car, but it was not to inflict injury upon the policemen.

Being placed on the ground prone is a judgment call and at the policemen’s discretion but would seem to contradict any claims of their concern for his previously displayed distress. Moreover, there was oddly no verbal attempt to deescalate the situation or attempt to calm his anxiety, especially since it was not a violent crime or exigent circumstances.

If possible verbal de-escalation is the first tactic on the force continuum scale and would have seemed preferable considering the investigation into the details of the counterfeit twenty had not begun in earnest. They still had not determined what their course of action would or could be. Enforcement of the law dictates that restraint be used comparatively to the crime committed unless escalating circumstances command a more intensive response. Just as you would not use swat for a jaywalker, the response given must be proportionate to the crime committed and the response received.

That notwithstanding, once prone on the ground, Mr. Floyd’s mental state reflected his physical state, he was submitted. He was within the policemen’s control and physically compliant.

He was also verbally compliant, pleading for his life and stating his physical condition of respiratory distress and that he could not breathe. Mr. Floyd offered no further resistance to being placed in the car because he was prone on the ground and not aggressive, combative, or evasive at all; he was secured.

But was he in custody? Had he been advised that he was under arrest? Chauvin demonstrated his total control of Mr. Floyd by Chauvin’s hands being in his pockets, indicating that whatever resistance that had been present, Mr. Floyd was well under control at that point.

Furthermore, Mr. Floyd provided no resistance from the point of being unconscious or deceased, although Chauvin continued the neck pressure with his hands casually in his pockets. Suspect control or threat of harm was never a concern. Chauvin’s casual placement of his hands in his pocket from the start reveals that any threat had been subdued.

Mr. Floyd was never able to account for the bad money transaction where a fake twenty-dollar bill turned into a homicide. Before dying, Mr. Floyd had to pass out first, meaning he was still alive but unconscious.

Chauvin’s continued pressure, in addition to rendering Mr. Floyd unconscious Chauvin ensured that Mr. Floyd had no chance at survival or revival. No corpus delicti or proof of guilt was ever established since the intent was not established that he knew it was bad money.

It should be noted that if Mr. Floyd had been one hundred percent compliant, the incident would have unfolded differently; however, did his non-compliance rise to the level of force that was used and sustained on him. Of course, cooperation with law enforcement is always preferable, but the force used for non-compliance must be measured to the circumstances.

It should also be noted that so callous was Chauvin’s indifference that even Mr. Floyd’s plea for his deceased mother or his unconscious state elicited no compassion from Chauvin’s demented implementation of the ”law.”

Now let us examine the policemen’s actions individually and collectively to establish any culpability. No culpability means that they had no effect on his death, and it probably would have happened anyway at that exact particular time. They did not send four policemen for a counterfeit-twenty assignment, so who received the call and who was assisting?

Was radio notified that they were assisting, and should they have even been there? If Chauvin was assisting on the run, then he should have remained secondary and let the assigned car handle it to their discretion. Was there a procedural discrepancy with the response to the assignment?

Two policemen arrived, and shortly thereafter, another two policemen arrived. The first two to arrive on the scene engaged Mr. Floyd, and he was placed in cuffs. He was subsequently seated on the sidewalk. Nothing extraneous so far as excessive physical force except perhaps the way he was approached could have been handled better.

Next, Mr. Floyd was escorted across the street towards the store. Before being escorted across the street, at least one officer stated that Mr. Floyd was noticeably distressed. What actions did he take as a result of this observed distress, and when? What were the signs?

If he was, in fact, believed to be in distress, it should have changed from a possible arrest situation into providing medical assistance. The main reason is city liability. If he were having a heart attack and was under arrest, then the city would be liable for his medical care, hospital stay and would have to assign an officer to his room around the clock to guard him. To avoid their liability and the city’s, he should have been passed off to medical personnel. He could have then been made a named suspect for future charges.

Aside from that, it is their legal and sworn obligation to provide assistance and not continue pursuing arrest when medical attention is needed while under their control. The policeman who first noticed the distress had the most responsibility to notify the others of Mr. Floyd’s suspected condition and why he thought so.

Considering his suspected medical distress and only having the ability to arrest with prior authorization from the Secret Service for permission, that should have made them get him medical help and be on their way. Instead, it becomes problematic with the suspected medical complication and lack of jurisdictional authority to arrest.

Once taken to the ground on his stomach alongside the squad car with his hands cuffed behind his back, he posed no threat to the four policemen or no threat to escape. It is nearly impossible to get up quickly or otherwise from that position or launch an assault.

If it was necessary to place him prone on the ground, then there is no policy, procedures, or training that allows for any force which is no longer necessary to bring a person under control. Once unresponsive, he was incapable of any resistance or threat.

Minimal force required to effect an arrest is the standard to justify force, but there is no justification for its use and no allowance for it legally when it is no longer necessary. What is the justification for kneeling on a deceased man’s neck for over two minutes and 46 seconds after his suspected expiration? The application of the knee to the neck area is where the criminality begins, and Chauvin’s mental state of mind begins to be detectable and exposed.

At this point, the complicity of the other policemen’s state of mind can be determined, regardless of whether they had participated or not in the restraint; their intent also became apparent. Thus, two policemen did knowingly, purposefully, willingly, and physically participate to some degree in exerting force and providing assistance to Chauvin to further his criminal excessive use of force with no legal justification.

They essentially participated in the assault of Mr. Floyd since there was no legal justification for force. The third policeman served as a deterrent and threat to discourage anyone who would intervene. With Mr. Floyd fully compromised, there was no need for any continued force or support of it.

Chauvin did knowingly, willfully, purposefully, recklessly, and negligently steadfastly hold his knee to Mr. Floyd’s neck area, resulting in his death even if only a contributory factor. If argued that Chauvin’s intent was not to kill Mr. Floyd but to restrain him, at what point did Mr. Floyd no longer need restraining?

Additionally, Chauvin’s excessive force was knowingly and purposefully applied, resulting in Mr. Floyd’s death rendering the force intentional and his death consequential to that force. Finally, it is expected that an 18-year veteran reasonably would have known the possible consequences, especially when warned and other policemen stated concerns.

What cannot be argued is that Chauvin’s knee was certainly intentionally placed there for nearly a nine-minute duration of time. But, further, he knowingly, willfully, purposefully, recklessly, and negligently without regard for the outcome because he replied to concerns acknowledging his disregard.

Chauvin’s actions revealed a mindset of punishment, not restraint, with his hands in his pocket to disguise the downward force and balancing of his full weight on Mr. Floyd’s neck, fully displaying the ease of his depravity, arrogance, and control.

The force used on Mr. Floyd by any officer once he was on the ground on his stomach handcuffed was a criminal act and felony assault by virtue of the policemen being armed and the assault resulting in Mr. Floyd’s death.

Excited delirium by compression is asphyxiation, defined as suffocation or a smothering effect. Breathing restriction and compression by weight is always the main trigger and can clearly be determined to have played a significant role in Mr. Floyd’s death.

As a policeman, you cannot facilitate a crime, or if you observe a crime, you are sworn to intervene, and it does not specify who is committing the crime. Any unlawful act you are sworn to intervene and prevent. There were multiple failures to intervene or pursue an alternative action that could have saved Mr. Floyd’s life.

Intervention could have occurred at the point when Mr. Floyd was believed to have been in distress before crossing the street, at the moment when he complained of breathing difficulties with Chauvin on his neck, and at the point when he had no pulse when checked.

Furthermore, another crucial time of inaction was when an officer suggested sitting him up to avoid the known concern of death from the explicitly mention excited delirium concerns, which was the eventual outcome. When Mr. Floyd was found unresponsive while the public begged for his life were all points when and where intervention should have occurred legally.

During the assault, Chauvin verbally responded, disregarding all concerns and information he knew or should have known. He was an 18-year veteran on the job, a field training officer, and the senior man on the scene. The senior man is always held to a higher standard, assuming he has the most experience and discernment knowing what to do or, more importantly, what not to do.

Chauvin knowingly continued his felony assault and discouraged other courses of mitigation or intervention. He knowingly and purposefully did hold his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck and maintained it there, fully aware of the risk and without legal justification. The other policemen’s actions were to do nothing to end this excessive use of force and were actively complicit in holding witnesses at bay using the authority of their uniforms and weapons, arguably as criminal tools.

The issue of crowd control is separate from the excessive use of force on Mr. Floyd. A different response regarding crowd control should have been directed toward the crowd. In no way was he responsible for the crowd reaction when he did not encourage it, but police misconduct incited it.

No obstruction charges or otherwise has been levied against any member of the crowd, just as no additional force on Mr. Floyd should have been used against Mr. Floyd for the crowds’ actions. Their fear from the crowd was due to Chauvin’s use of excessive force, not a menacing crowd threatening violence but a rebuking crowd.

They used their uniforms and intimidation of their authority in the furtherance of Chauvin’s crime. Had it not been armed, uniformed policemen involved, there is a more likely chance a civilian would have intervened, preventing Mr. Floyd’s death. Instead, they provided protection while Chauvin committed his crime displaying their complicity and willful approval of Chauvin’s actions by their inaction or support of his actions.

The two rookie policemen knowingly acted to support Chauvin to further his felony physical assault, thereby consenting to his actions and sharing his Mens rea, intentional infliction of unnecessary force. Their state of mind was to willfully, purposely, recklessly, and negligently with full knowledge against all perceived risk consent to excessive force by at one point physically assisting. Obviously, they did not oppose it or intervene to prevent it but did assist in it.

Citizens and bystanders with no time on the job or academy training knew the risk. Mr. Floyd and the public were trying to tell the policemen repeatedly. All four policemen were fully aware that their actions or inaction posed a significant risk to Mr. Floyd’s life, even insinuating it themselves. The consequences of their actions or inactions were known or should have been known that serious bodily harm or death would be the result.

Due to the 8 minutes and 46-second duration of the homicide beginning when Mr. Floyd was handcuffed on his stomach on the ground, all four policemen displayed knowing, willful, purposeful, reckless, and negligent conduct at various intervals while Mr. Floyd was the victim of excessive force that led to his death.

It is evident that Chauvin’s intent was to disregard the risk of death to Mr. Floyd, continuing even when Mr. Floyd was deceased. Chauvin continued until the EMTs arrived. None of the policemen did anything to stop Chauvin or aid Mr. Floyd. All four policemen displayed each of the required mindsets during the duration of the lengthy deadly incident at various times. This was a homicide committed by a policeman that was aided and abetted by three other policemen.

Citizen video, police bodycam, radio transmissions, and multiple witnesses in broad daylight in full view of the public were not deterrents to their crime but present overwhelming evidence against their actions.

The question of intent or guilt for Mr. Floyd’s death would seem undeniable. Still, due process of law and possible plea bargain or sentencing arrangements could be the only reason to claim innocence, certainly not the legal justification of their actions. So how can anyone defend their actions?

Mr. Floyd was a human being treated inhumanely, well below any standard that should be acceptable from law enforcement. Accordingly, the law has no accommodation for such actions. Mr. Floyd’s Constitutional and Civil Rights were trampled and suffocated from his body without compassion by policemen who now hide behind their rights seeking compassion for themselves.

Their Constitutional Rights will be upheld, and due process assured them where defense attorneys would attempt to blame Mr. Floyd for his own death while being handcuffed on the ground. Despite the force continuum, display of excessive force on a deceased man, discrepancies in observable actions, and their implausible explanations, they will try to justify the reprehensible by claiming no laws were broken by them. Perhaps along with some form of qualified immunity will be claimed.

Aside from the verdict still to be rendered from the courtroom, the City of Minneapolis has rendered its verdict. A historic settlement of 27 million dollars to settle the wrongful death lawsuit regarding this incident. The size of the settlement reflects the horrific depravity beyond reason, vindication, protection of the law, or moral standards. It was an honorable action by the City not to justify or minimize the colossal injustice that caused Mr. Floyd’s death. Instead, it is an exemplary example of admission of blatant guilt to preserve government and law enforcement integrity.

Defending obviously egregious acts effectively diminishes public respect for and compliance with law enforcement and encourages resistance to unfairness. The public trust, which took many good deeds and years to establish, can be nationally destroyed instantly by one act such as Chauvin’s. It is only regained when the law is enforced equally, including against law enforcement personnel that violate their sworn duty.

Obvious and blatant violations of the law, duty, and public trust cannot be condoned and tolerated, especially when it is this egregious and erodes the public trust. Such egregious acts make it hard for good Officers to maintain public trust when this kind of policing creates problems for them and erodes their protections.

The negative consequences are suffered by the law enforcement community, even more so than the public. Although everyone in the public does not interact with law enforcement, all law enforcement are public servants and must adhere to a code of conduct imposed on them due to the repercussions of Chauvin-like behavior.

The implementation of body cameras, loss of credibility, attrition of public perception, the increased propensity for resistance and aggression against personnel, defunding issues, decreased union and bargaining power, and the restrictions on equipment fearing abuses against the public are responses to law enforcement injustices.

Other ramifications are more hazardous working conditions, decrease public cooperation, GPS on vehicles, restricting search warrant criteria, use of force and contact documentation, morale decline, and dissension among the ranks.

Hiring and staffing difficulties, federal oversite, qualified immunity protections removed for honest mistakes, and many more are directly related to law enforcement not being willing to police themselves. When law enforcement cannot self-regulate themselves, then more restrictive levels of accountability are placed upon them.

Law enforcement must evolve beyond the pathology and culture it traditionally has operated under to change its method of operation, progressing beyond the rugged, physically tough beat cop authoritatively demanding unconditional, absolute submission to their authority.

No longer exempt from judgment, being protected by their arrogant elite status as the law or by the repressive intimidation of dreadful consequences separated from the people they should serve. Coercion by a quasi-military occupying force which civilians must categorically comply with or force will be justified, is no longer tolerated.

Being law-abiding should not require a humbling and submission to authority even when unlawful acts reminiscent of vigilantism are imposed by law enforcement. Instead, you must simply enforce the law, not become the law.

Unfortunately, police have historically been the enforcement arm of racism, immigration, minority control, and labor and union disputes at the direction of those with undue influence over policy or preference. As a result, they have enjoyed a royal centurion discretion accountable only to their superiors to whom they answer, relegating the commoners beneath the power invested in them, creating fearful respect.

The regulation of authority, punishment, and freedom instill a reflexive apprehension when dealing with law enforcement. We all know the feeling when a police car activates its lights behind us. The perception and projected expectation of behavior during these encounters are generally uneasiness until relieved by their demeanor or the reason for the encounter.

It is usually magnified to a conditioned anxiety if you are a member of a demographic where abuses have been normalized or expected. Racism has always been entrenched in law enforcement and the military with a culture of tolerance and a lack of condemnation, implying a tacit if not often explicit approval endorsing that authoritative abusive mentality when no action is taken, or it is condoned.

This tendency towards an adversarial mentality must be modified and admonished when inappropriate. A police versus the public mentality reinforces a war-like occupying force perspective where the opposition is dehumanized to justify abuses and violations of their dignity and humanity.

Insisting their rights and treatment is an inconsequential consideration and rationalization for lack of accountability regarding your treatment of them. War or law enforcement displayed at its worst should have regulations regarding the rules of engagement, treatment, and capture that it must follow. Law enforcement must follow the guidelines established and, when blatantly in violation, should concede error instead of the righteous indignation of defiance to being judged.

If you will not listen or display reason, you essentially provide no other option except not to be reasoned with, thereby encouraging non-compliance. Thus, you are further justifying a forceful response in a self-fulfilling hazard of your creation.

Evolution is preferable to revolution when reflecting or pursuing social changes, and cooperation by persuasion to convince rather than rugged physicality or force seems a better alternative. To accept surrender is preferred to forceable submission, and if fair surrender will not be accepted, then resistance is encouraged. The goal is not a calibration of machismo but the easiest obtainment of an objective.

Let force be the response to conflict and not the cause of it. Influences of the history of policing by implication, ideology, and methodology must reflect the future of societal tolerances to preserve the most respect and support for law enforcement. The job is not for everyone, maybe not the faint of heart or brutally inclined with limited people skills. For the maximum support for law enforcement to be maintained, there have to be admissions of obvious wrongdoing and misconduct.

It is counterproductive for law enforcement to support violations of wrongdoing; it exposes that the system is broken, and they will not fix it without further restriction of their authority. Law enforcement must be subjected to the same laws they are sworn to enforce, not above them.

It is sometimes necessary and always better to relinquish the part for the good of the whole. But, nevertheless, good decent Officers must not be cast under a cloak of scorn with elevated hazards under hostile working conditions to defend the indefensible.

The police union dues, morale, and resources should not be spent despite members’ dissent for actions they disagree with and know to be wrong. The first rule of policing is to go home every night from the job, the will to overcome and to survive encounters.

The second is not to let someone send you to the penitentiary and jackpot you by their actions. I am not going to do your time for you or with you. I will not let you jackpot me and send me to prison for your actions. This is understood.

The police union has an obligation to defend officers and not waste the members’ resources by publicly and arrogantly condoning unquestionably damaging behavior, which compromises the whole department’s credibility. A policeman has a fiduciary duty to supply the union with actions they can defend but not to the detriment of the union members, the police department, and the whole legal structure.

The actual thin blue line and honor among officers is not to ruin or let a fellow officer get jackpotted on your dime. United we stand separately we fall so that others are left standing. The primary offender should accept the brunt of the burden to alleviate as much as possible on the remaining policemen. That is the real code.

The union has a responsibility to protect the union body above an individual member, understanding that one must sometimes answer so that others may serve without contempt. However, refusing the obvious accountability disparages the union’s principles and, by association, the principles of your union members that paints the good officers with a bloody brush. When these policemen’s actions do not give you anything to work with, you must save the ship instead of circling the wagons.

The righteous needs of the many outweigh the detrimental actions of the few. But, if they blow it so badly, then you must step away and condemn their actions even if by absentee proxy of removing your unwavering defense, if not your conditional support.

How many of your members agree with having their dues spent for this? How many good OFFICERS have to suffer as a whole nationally with the public perception that you promote? When you, good and bad, wear the same respected uniform, it is hard to tell from the outside looking in, but you know from the inside, the good from the bad.

The decision must be made among the ranks, the bosses, the prosecutors, and the judges but mostly the street cops on the front line who are the most vulnerable not to allow members to tarnish them by criminal behavior because you become silently complicit by aiding and abetting that as well. The street cops surely suffer the consequences most.

When the union sees no evil and the union staunchly proclaims with arrogant indifference their support for crimes such as this, they tolerate it by demonstration and proclamation. Then, the only logical conclusion left is that this could be an undetected RICO violation of an ongoing culture of a criminal enterprise with known collaborators and tolerance for criminal activity and corruption.

It invites investigations and attention. But, at the very least, it is a poor demonstration of leadership that endangers law enforcement and promotes an insidious culture waiting to implode again.

We know what it should say about Chauvin, but what does it really say about those who would defend this public assassination. Who can be proud of this abomination or defend its despicable representation as good policing? What manner of twisted articulation can justify these four policemen’s actions?

Why the extraordinary efforts to justify this behavior and claim that these actions were necessary and legal? Why lose all credibility to represent the other members by supporting these actions? Did these actions meet departmental expectations, and are they representative of what a police union and police department can be proud of?

If they did not fear for their actions, they should not fear having it called for what it is and suffer the consequences. At its core, it is murder by all standards for all involved, which should come with extended stay, room, and board, complimentary amenities, free utilities, plenty of company, and lifetime membership for Chauvin should also be included.

More specifically, extensive prison time for violations of all four levels of accountability and serious deterrents must be imposed. The success of any conviction is not in assessing the highest charges but in dispensing the most prison time to be served. At the Judge’s discretion, sentences should run consecutive, meaning one after another, which means maximum prison time.

Local, national, and global outrage has been agitated to condemn this vile murder, while some would defend this evil at enormous cost claiming support of law enforcement or Mr. Floyd’s non-compliance. This is not racial, black or white, but human. He was a human being with a family and loved ones whose actions did not rise to the level of what we all witnessed.

It should never be witnessed or suffered again. If this were done to an animal, the depravity would be apparent and the outrage universal, or would you prefer that this happen to other men, women, and juveniles as justified standard police operating procedures, especially over minor offenses.

Police procedure and conduct are what is on trial. So why hasn’t the ongoing protest, property destruction, billions of dollars in resources and lost productivity, racial division, and decay of law enforcement respect, safety, and morale not been enough to admonish the actions of one man’s barbaric casual act of murder?

Remember, this is all over a counterfeit twenty-dollar bill, and the question must be asked was it worth it?. If you need any further guidance on if it was worth it, the City of Minneapolis just gave 27 million reasons why it wasn’t.

Thurston K. Atlas

Creating A Buzz

George Floyd Part 2 of 3- Logical Reasoning

Facts & Questions

Sometimes you must go backwards to retrace and unravel an incident, then proceed forward to a place of clarity. A review or reenactment from the end of the critical incident that claimed Mr. George Floyd’s life analyzed in retrospect will reveal the points incriminating to all parties involved based on the visual evidence and factual inference of the application of the law.

An examination from the end to the beginning of the encounter is a very distinct way to isolate the mental State of mind, the Mens Rea, or intent, so it is legally established. The criminality, the mea culpa or fault, can be best demonstrated by everyone’s actual actions or inactions at critical times according to legal standards.

Were these actions justifiable based upon what was known at the time, what should have been known, or what was being observed throughout that time? Was it within the law and police procedure or a violation? Does the action’s justification rise to the level of its application to the circumstances? Was it legally necessary and permissible? The answers all serve as actual testimony to the facts.

According to the law, inaction can also be an action when there was a duty to act. If there was inaction, was there a duty to act? What action should have been taken, and how could that action have affected the outcome? As a fluid evolving situation, the timing and chronological sequence matter greatly to the incident’s legality and outcome. Diligent analysis of the timing and sequence will reveal crucial determinations of criminality and culpability.

 Our method will state the facts as we believe them to be accurate and then ask the pertinent questions raised. Finally, in Part 3, we will examine the answers by deductive reasoning of the legal application of the law and police departmental policy and procedures, analyzing and suggesting the obvious logical resolutions and interpretations.

Facts: Mr. Floyd, while in handcuffs, was surrounded by four policemen and physically restrained by at least three of them at different times during the incident. He was removed from the scene by responding EMTs on a stretcher, presumably lifeless by all appearances. He was then transported to the hospital by the EMT unit.

Questions: Who radioed in for medical assistance, and at what point during the incident? How many policemen involved spoke with radio regarding medical aid, the reason for the request for EMT, and if requests were made to step up their arrival due to Mr. Floyd’s physical decline? When stating Mr. Floyd’s condition, was there any mention of Chauvin on his neck restricting his breathing? Was that due to an omission or concealment? What was said during the radio transmission? What do the dispatcher recordings and separate notes reflect?

When was a supervisor notified, and by whom did any policemen involved make notifications to advise command? Were there recorded specialized channels that communicated more sensitive information? Did that happen, by whom, and at what time? Were they recorded and reviewed if such secure channel communications took place and reviewed as they most likely should have been pursued by discovery or duces tecum?

What were EMT’s dispatched communications? At what point did the EMTs determine that Mr. Floyd had no vital signs indicating death? Was it before transport, during transport, or at the hospital by medical personnel? What life-saving steps did the EMT’s take, and how did Mr. Floyd respond? Once at the hospital, what life-saving steps were taken, for how long, and by who. What was the information given by the EMTs, are their paperwork and interviews complete and consistent with this information, and when was Mr. Floyd’s actual pronouncement of death?

Were there real-time 911 calls from the public as the critical incident occurred, and how many? What was the content of the policemen’s excited utterances as excited utterances by any party are generally admissible in court as evidence of knowledge or intent? When was the location secured and treated as a crime scene with the Use of Deadly Force Team or Homicide Unit notified to respond on the scene? Was deadly force protocol initiated and maintained, specifically the separation of policemen and preventing collaboration of statements before interviews? Was witness identification and statements gathered?

Facts: The primary policeman later been identified as Chauvin, an 18-year veteran of the force and the senior officer on the scene. Mr. Floyd was pinned to the ground by his neck by Chauvin’s left knee and left front shin area applied to the carotid nerve or artery area of the neck traversing the windpipe, trachea, and larynx.

The carotid artery is located on both sides of the neck. It does not matter which way Mr. Floyd’s head was turned. It would still be exposed. Also, the greater torque or twist of the head, the greater the vulnerability of this neck artery to causing unconsciousness or a fatal outcome. It restricts oxygen and blood flow simultaneously. This restriction occurred for an estimated 8 minutes and 46 seconds, of which approximately 2 minutes and 53 seconds Mr. Floyd was unresponsive, presumably unconscious, and probably deceased.

Despite public outcry, repeated warnings expressing concern from fellow officers, and Mr. Floyd’s very own plea Chauvin continued to apply pressure with his total body weight on Mr. Floyd’s neck. The force continuum scale governs police use of force and justifies what type of force is permitted. Code red is the highest level of threat and response category. Any neck restraint classifies as a code red on the force continuum scale, which categorizes the severity of its use as deadly force.

With code red being the highest threat level assessment, the resulting response can only be to preserve life or avoid serious bodily harm but not gain compliance. Any neck restraint is considered deadly force whether used against a policeman or used by a policeman. Due to the deadly force used on Mr. Floyd, it is very likely to have caused or contributed to his death and inflicted serious physical harm upon him. Thus, the necessity or articulation for its use is a problematic violation from its initiation and certainly its continuation.  

Reiterating that he was handcuffed hands behind his back, prone on the ground with four policemen surrounding him already searched and determined to be free of weapons. These circumstances do not support a code red response and neck restraint regardless of however applied. Therefore, it is not and cannot be justified according to the force continuum scale. 

There is, however, no dispute that Mr. Floyd’s death was caused on the scene before EMT arrived, with Chauvin’s neck restraint a factor. Without Chauvin’s knee as a factor, it would suggest that whatever other factors that contributed to Mr. Floyd’s death, he would have succumbed to them at that very moment anyway without Chauvin’s use of excessive force. 

The State certifies the Police Academy and dictates the training criteria and curriculum, which extensively covers the use of force. The City swears in the cadets to become officers, they have the ultimate legal liability and extensively covers the use of force. Technically, the use of force can be shots fired down to as minor as placing someone in handcuffs without incident voluntarily and with utmost cooperation.

The City gives the authority to arrest for misdemeanors and issue citations. The State gives the authority for deadly force and felony arrest, which is why you go to County Court for State charges. Although the State gives you the authority to use deadly force, the City is responsible for that force and subsequent training once the police are sworn in.

 By all standards applied both State and City, force of any kind must be the minimal force necessary to effect an arrest. Thus, force should discontinue proportionately as resistance lessens or it is no longer necessary. But in this instance, it becomes clear it was unnecessary to effect an arrest or gain compliance when Chauvin has his hand in his pocket, and there was no need to use his hands to control Mr. Floyd.

Questions: The question then becomes, was the knee justified in the first place based on the criteria for its use? If he had been a code red threat at any point, what level of threat did he present once he was unresponsive and feared unconscious or deceased?

Once Chauvin’s knee was on his neck constituting deadly force, at what point was Mr. Floyd not a code red threat or actively resisting with the threat of death or serious bodily harm to anyone? Was there any discernable level of threat or fear of any kind with four officers present, and Chauvin’s hands in his pockets while his knee was on Mr. Floyd’s neck? 

Would the threat level seem under control and become suspect when policemen feel comfortable enough to turn their back and not be engage otherwise if any threat existed? Was Mr. Floyd allowed to comply, and were there verbal commands and instructions issued for compliance? Had compliance and control already effectively been achieved when three officers had only secondary participation? 

Were Mr. Floyd’s pleadings not an opportunity to ease the use of deadly force. Maybe issue orders to comply following a clear indication of his willingness to comply. But, instead, they disregarded their responsibility and duty to discontinue or cause to be discontinued the use of force absent his resistance or its necessity.

Despite all the concerns about Mr. Floyd’s medical condition expressed before Mr. Floyd laid lifeless, what threat to four policemen’s life or limb was Floyd with his hands cuffed behind his back prone on the ground on his stomach? If we believe their concern for Mr. Floyd’s medical condition, wouldn’t their actions be even more baffling?

With Chauvin on his neck, when did Chauvin order him to comply, or more importantly, what chance did Chauvin give him to comply? Even unresponsive with no pulse, the use of deadly force was not altered to the level of Mr. Floyd’s lack of ability to resist or actual resistance, nor was there any possibly life-saving officer intervention. 

Was a taser, pepper spray, verbal persuasion, or other compliance techniques or less-lethal option available? Why did Chauvin eventually take his knee off Mr. Floyd’s neck? Was it because Mr. Floyd was unresponsive, or Chauvin had killed him? No, that is unlikely because that had already apparently happened minutes before. It was confirmed by no pulse being felt by another policeman. Was the EMT’s arrival the only thing that finally prompted him to remove himself off of Mr. Floyd’s neck?

Aren’t illegal orders and criminal actions to be disobeyed and not participated in or furthered in addition to expectations to be prevented? Isn’t it understood and enforced in any military or quasi-military organization, including the police?

Is it not your vow and commitment to uphold the law and not break it? The movie A Few Good Men is a prime example. You should have done something and had a duty to stop it but did not. If you had intervened, maybe even after Mr. Floyd was unresponsive, could he have been still alive or potentially revived?

 

 

 

Would Mr. Floyd more likely have survived if not for his encounter with Chauvin’s knee? If we cannot say yes for sure that Chauvin was the cause of Mr. Floyd’s death, then we cannot say no either for sure? Can it be denied that the fact is three officers had a duty to step in and stop it, but they did nothing? Instead of intervening at various life-saving points, did they not aid and abet in the murder by either actively assisting or providing protection and crowd neutralization to deter citizen intervention?

Facts: Mr. Floyd is stretched out prone on the ground, handcuffed with hands behind his back face down after being placed there. Prior to being placed on the ground, Mr. Floyd was resistant to being placed in the squad car.

Questions: Were the duration and events which occurred while placed face down on the ground the best course of action or option available, or an indication of indifference to unnecessary use of force? 

Was standing him alongside the squad car or maintaining the position of him being partially in the squad car more preferable given his level of resistance?

What were all policemen’s roles in attempting to get him into the squad car and removing him, placing him on the ground? Whose decision was it to place him prone, and why if he was almost entirely in the squad car?

At what point did they each participate in the chronological order of events and why? Was there a detectable amount of frustration or agitation from the policemen towards Mr. Floyd? Was the reasonableness and level of force used lawful and necessary? 

Facts: The foundation of the law is what was known or reasonably suspected at the time. It governs probable cause and reasonable suspicion from the Constitution and Bill of Rights down to municipal law enforcement and policemen conduct. The history of the policemen involved was not known at the time, just as Mr. Floyd’s history presumably was not known at the time either.

Their histories have no bearing on considering the facts and motivations known at that time, not overriding any action that occurred then. The prevailing influence of histories consistently demonstrates a propensity to act according to a previous pattern, a reluctance exhibited to refrain from an activity, or implied tendencies during an incident. Histories are indications of conduct consistency and by no means restrictive of any number of actions or responses, both positive or negative, demonstrated which are inconsistent with that history.  

Mr. Floyd’s criminal history reveals no prior consistency of code red behavior towards police personnel. Also, after the fact consideration for the two rookie policemen’s lack of history bears no mitigating circumstances to avoid accountability but may indicate their experience but not their lack of knowledge regarding appropriate force. Histories are indicators but not always relevant implications that can be related to a current incident. It also has to be presumed that Chauvin’s alleged previous racial undertones must be considered equally as Mr. Floyd’s run-ins with the law if histories are a factor.

Questions: Why would Mr. Floyd’s history be unfavorable for him, but the history of the four officers not be unfavorable for them if so revealed? So are we to assume the history of the two veteran policemen is disregarded, the history of the two rookie policemen taken into consideration for clemency, but Mr. Floyd’s history held against him?

How could the unknown history at the time somehow indicate that Mr. Floyd needed treatment as a code red level threat in this incident? 

If Mr. Floyd’s history were unknown at the time of the encounter, what bearing could it have on the incident? If he were a priest, what relevance would that have on the incident if unknown, none? How could the incident not be a judgment on the actions of the participants at the time, which would render histories after the fact as irrelevancies?

Facts: The policemen walked Mr. Floyd across the street without incident, and he seemed to have some minor passive resistance but not actively aggressive behavior. He was handcuffed with minimal resistance and without incident or struggle. Mr. Floyd’s action upon being removed from the vehicle would not constitute resisting arrest or being combative. Therefore, it did not meet the physical standard or required warnings to cease and desist or placed under arrest for resisting.

It appeared he was confused and more verbally resistant, attempting to have explained to him what was going on and turning to talk but definitely not combative. Officers said that they noticed a concerning level of distress upon handcuffing Mr. Floyd.

Questions: Before being removed from the car, was Mr. Floyd adequately advised as to what the encounter was concerning? After showing signs of distress during handcuffing, why was Mr. Floyd even taken across the street at all? If Mr. Floyd was showing signs of distress, why was he placed on the ground face down? If Mr. Floyd showed signs of distress, why did Chauvin place his knee on his neck, further complicating his distress? What was observed, and what physical signs and indications conveyed that was concerning? What, how, and when were the signs escalating, indicating decline? 

If Mr. Floyd showed signs of distress, at what point was this radioed in, and with four officers present, what assistance was he given? Is it prudent or customary to further restrict someone’s breathing if distress is suspected? Was there a belief that Chauvin’s weight on Mr. Floyd’s neck was in any way assisting him and a benefit to his distress? Was the delay in requesting medical attention from the initial suspicion before bringing him across the street justified, or the whole distress story a fabrication to cover the cause of his death?

What should have been the policemen’s response? Was there any reason for any delay in offering assistance, requesting EMT, or removing Chauvin off the neck of what you have stated was an obviously medically distressed person? If Mr. Floyd showed signs of distress, what distress signs were radio notified of to better inform the EMT dispatcher of the progression of his symptoms other than a grown man being on his neck? 

Imagine suspecting he was having a heart attack. Would you place him on his stomach with an over 200-pound man on his neck? Why was no aid rendered or attempted during his distress after he displayed no pulse? After displaying no pulse, did the other officers feel it was a lawful and necessary use of force for Chauvin to remain on Mr. Floyd’s neck?

Facts: The policemen responded to a counterfeit twenty-dollar bill passed at the store and received information that directed them to Mr. Floyd across the street. Almost immediately upon approach, the policeman escalates the situation by unnecessarily pulling his gun, revealing his disposition that Mr. Floyd knew it was a counterfeit bill. His demeanor was to prevent an escape or assume a threat level fearful enough to pull his service weapon, but why? You cannot just draw your gun on someone for a conversation. Was there a visible threat, or what justified this approach?

Questions: Was the twenty-dollar bill marked and taken as evidence prior to approaching Mr. Floyd? Did they know the counterfeit protocol of notifying the Secret Service and recording the individual’s information to be forwarded in a report? Should they have known counterfeiting is a federal crime and is only arrestable by a federal agent or by prior federal authorization? Finally, did they know that they lacked the authority to arrest him without providing he knew that it was counterfeit? 

Subsequently, was the counterfeit money found to have Mr. Floyd’s DNA or prints on it confirming after his death that he had indeed possessed the fake? Could they or did they know if Mr. Floyd had knowledge that it was counterfeit or how he obtained it?

Aren’t the Secret Service only interested in printing operations and patterns, not random twenty-dollar bills in which they cannot prove knowledge or intent? With authority to investigate but not arrest, why was any force at all used? Is it common knowledge that counterfeit money is in public circulation and could conceivably fall into the unsuspecting hand of any law-abiding citizen unbeknownst to them?  

Is there a point where the crime does not justify the force used or even handcuffing for a nonviolent cold stand or questioning? Can the actions leading to his death be justified compared to the nature of the crime, the public danger posed, or threats posed endangering the policemen’s safety? Was Mr. Floyd’s race a factor in the handling of this incident? Were the other policemen in fear of Chauvin or his reputation? Would a conversation, patience, or verbal persuasion have been more suitable, and is it also taught as a tool for law enforcement?

Reverse engineering of the circumstance and events reveals the highest contrast in logical continuity between what actually happened and what is said to have happened. Often when constructing a fabrication, it cannot pass the scrutiny of reverse analysis. It is constructed to make the pieces fit conceptually in a progression that only lends itself to conventional rationale, not in-depth questioning. The contemplation of why something would be necessary if the previous assertion is true becomes an evident contradiction. If it were true, it would be no need for the subsequent action.

For example, if they had honestly thought Mr. Floyd was experiencing distress before his death, why would Chauvin continue his behavior, or they allow it. It stands more to reason that they needed to conceal something and quickly falsified an implausible explaination that contradicts their prior assertions, actions, and the chronological sequence of events.

Their explanation leaves them exposed in too many areas lacking justification to be accurate. Moreover, it blatantly illuminates that if what they said were true, then countermeasures would not have been necessary, or otherwise, their action could not have been consistent with their initial assertion.

All indications are that their concern was for exposure from Chauvin’s reckless and willful misconduct, which left them assessing what they were part and parcel of was improper. Mr. Floyd needing medical attention could only be exacerbated by the distress inflicted upon him by Chauvin and their inaction. 

Now that the illumination of contradictions has been identified by the questions raised, then deductive conclusions of guilt can be examined and proven. Furthermore, did the punishment fit the crime or did the tactics fit the situation? Keep in mind even self-defense only allows for the force that neutralizes a threat and not beyond the danger posed.     

 

Thurston K. Atlas

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