On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, was killed in Minneapolis, Minnesota, during an arrest for allegedly using a counterfeit bill. Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, knelt on Floyd's neck for almost nine minutes while Floyd was handcuffed and lying face down, begging for his life and repeatedly saying "I can't breathe". A second and third officer further restrained Floyd while a fourth prevented bystanders from intervening. During the final three minutes Floyd was motionless and had no pulse while Chauvin ignored onlookers' pleas to remove his knee, which he did not do until medics told him to.
The following day, after videos made by witnesses and security cameras became public, all four officers were fired. Two autopsies found Floyd's death to be a homicide. Chauvin was initially charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, to which was later added second-degree murder; the three other officers were charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder.
Floyd's death triggered demonstrations and protests in many U.S. cities, including here in Los Angeles, and around the world against police brutality, police racism, and lack of police accountability. In early June the Minneapolis City Council took action to ban chokeholds and require police officers to intervene against the use of excessive force by other officers, and voted an intent to replace the police department with a "new community-based system of public safety.” The Minneapolis Police Chief canceled contract negotiations with the police union and announced plans to bring in outside experts to examine how the union contract can be restructured to provide transparency and "flexibility for true reform."