Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison will take the lead in the case of George Floyd’s killing by the Minneapolis police, Gov. Tim Walz announced on Sunday.
“This decision is one that I feel takes us in that direction and the step to start getting the justice for George Floyd,” Walz said Sunday. “When I spoke to the Floyd family they were very clear: They wanted the system to work for them. They wanted to believe that there was trust and they wanted to feel like the facts would be heard and justice would be served.”
Ellison said at the news conference that he plans to “bring to bear all the resources necessary” to the case.
“I just want to let the public know we are pursuing justice, we are pursuing truth, we are doing it vigorously,” he said.
Prosecutor asked for help:
The announcement came after Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman asked the governor for help.
“There have been recent developments in the facts of the case where the help and expertise of the Attorney General would be valuable,” Freeman said in a statement.
Freeman’s office charged former officer Derek Chauvin with third-degree murder and manslaughter in Floyd’s death on Friday.
“The governor has asked me to take this case and that’s what we’re going to do,” Ellison said. “I anticipate we’re going to be working constructively together.”
Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said that the other officers on the scene of Floyd’s death were also “complicit.”
"Silence and inaction — you're complicit. You're complicit,” he said. “If there were one solitary voice that would have intervened ... that's what I would have hoped for."
Ellison urges patience:
"We are moving as expeditiously, quickly and effectively as we can," Ellison told CNN on Monday. "I need to protect this prosecution. I am not going to create a situation where people can say this was a rush to judgment."
Ellison agreed with Arradondo’s statement and said that the other officers also face potential charges.
"I absolutely credit the observations of the chief. He has the experience, the know-how, and the integrity to make that comment," he said, adding that the officers could be charged with aiding and abetting.