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San Diego Mayor Condemns Minneapolis Officers Over Police Custody Death

Mayor Kevin Faulconer at the May 29, 2020, news briefing.

Credit: City of San Diego

Above: Mayor Kevin Faulconer at the May 29, 2020, news briefing.

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer Friday condemned the actions of a group of former Minneapolis police officers -- one of whom is now charged with murder -- that led to the death of a handcuffed black man and has sparked protests across the country.

Faulconer began his daily news conference, which has typically provided updates on the region's COVID-19 situation, by calling George Floyd's death "a tragedy" and saying he stood with the San Diego Police Department in condemning the officers' actions "in the strongest possible terms."

Floyd, 46, died Memorial Day after Officer Derek Chauvin pinned him face-down to the ground by placing his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly 10 minutes, during which Floyd repeatedly said that he could not breathe.

Chauvin, 44, was charged Friday with third-degree murder and manslaughter, but charges had not been filed against three other officers involved in Floyd's arrest as of Friday evening. All four officers were fired the day after Floyd's death.

"It never should have happened," Faulconer said. "George Floyd should be alive today. Those Minneapolis officers robbed him of his life. Their actions were wrong and this is unacceptable."

Faulconer echoed sentiments expressed this week by San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit, who issued a statement that read, "Our profession must do better. We will continue to work tirelessly to build trust, establish clear policies, ensure consistent training, and maintain open and honest dialogue with our communities."

San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore issued a similar statement Friday decrying the officers' actions.

"The men and women of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department hold ourselves to a very high standard and work every day to build trust with the communities we serve," Gore said. "Mr. Floyd's death in Minneapolis is a harsh reminder of how the actions of a few can quickly erode that trust. We must do better."

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