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George Floyd’s killer cop sentenced to three and a half years in jail

In October, J Alexander Kueng pled guilty to a state charge of second-degree manslaughter.

He was one of four cops engaged in the arrest of the 46-year-old, which was seen on video by spectators.

Mr Floyd was slain by police while lying prone and handcuffed in May 2020.

His killing provoked international outcry as well as a surge of protests against racial inequality and police use of force.

Kueng will serve his new state term with a previous federal sentence for breaching Mr Floyd’s civil rights.

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Derek Chauvin, a former police officer, was convicted on state murder and manslaughter charges in April 2021 for kneeling on Mr Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes and sentenced to 22-and-a-half years in prison. He is serving that term with a 20-year sentence for federal civil rights violations for which he pleaded guilty in December 2021.

Kueng, along with two other responding officers, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao, were convicted guilty on federal civil rights charges in February. During the attempted arrest, the cops were accused with “deliberate disregard to [Mr Floyd’s] significant medical needs.”

The arrest video shows Kueng and Lane supporting Chauvin by helping to restrain Mr Floyd.

As well as Chauvin, the other officers involved were given sentences of varying lengths for the federal charges:

  • J Alexander Kueng was given a 36-month sentence for failing to intervene
  • Tou Thao was sentenced to 42-months in prison. The state case against him is still pending.
  • Thomas Lane is serving a two-and-a-half year sentence concurrently with a three-year state sentence for second-degree manslaughter

Speaking in court ahead of the sentencing, prosecutor Matthew Frank said that Kueng “was not simply a bystander in what happened that day”, but instead played an “active part”.

While Kueng declined to speak publicly to the court, his defense counsel, Thomas Plunkett, contended that city and police authorities “failed” Mr Floyd, Kueng, and the community.

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Attorneys for George Floyd’s family stated in a statement that the sentence is “yet another piece of justice for the Floyd family.”

“As the family prepares for yet another holiday season without George, we hope that moments like these continue to bring them some solace, knowing that George’s death was not in vain,” the statement said.

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