George Floyd Case: Judge Drops 3rd-Degree Murder Charge Against Derek Chauvin
A Minneapolis judge has dismissed the third-degree murder charge against Derek Chauvin, one of the four former police officers facing criminal charges in the Memorial Day killing of George Floyd.
Chauvin, who was captured on cell phone video kneeling on Floyd's neck for several minutes, still faces a higher charge of second-degree murder. Chauvin's legal team filed a motion to have both charges dropped, but the latter was denied.
The dismissal will be stayed for five days to allow state prosecutors to consider a pretrial appeal, according to court documents.
Three other former Minneapolis officers — Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and Alexander Kueng — face charges of aiding and abetting murder in the killing of Floyd. They also sought to have their complaints dismissed for lack of probable cause.
However, Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill denied each of their motions.
Floyd's death sparked international protests calling for an end to police brutality and systemic racism.
All four officers have been released from jail on bond.
Their trial is expected to start in March.
This is a developing story and will be updated.
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