The mayor of Minneapolis called Wednesday for criminal charges to be filed against the white police officer seen on video kneeling on the neck of a handcuffed black man during an arrest, even after the man said he couldn't breathe and stopped moving, the AP reports. Based on the video, Mayor Jacob Frey said he believes officer Derek Chauvin should be charged in Monday's death of George Floyd. Chauvin and three other officers were fired Tuesday. The video recorded by a bystander shows Chauvin with his knee on Floyd's neck for several minutes as Floyd is on the ground with his face on the pavement. "I've wrestled with, more than anything else over the last 36 hours, one fundamental question: Why is the man who killed George Floyd not in jail?" said Frey, who is white.
He later added: "I saw no threat. I saw nothing that would signal that this kind of force was necessary." But despite the officers' swift dismissals, whether the death will be considered a criminal act or something less, like excessive force, is a more complicated question that will likely take months to investigate. Floyd's death prompted protests Tuesday, with thousands taking to the streets at the intersection where he died. Many protesters marched more than 2 miles to the police precinct station in that part of the city, with some damaging the building’s windows and squad cars and spraying graffiti. Police in riot gear eventually confronted them with tear gas and projectiles. Tense skirmishes stretched late into the evening. (Read more about the protests.)