J. Alexander Kueng, former Minneapolis police officer who helped restrain George Floyd, sentenced to 3 ½ years in prison

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CNN

A former Minneapolis police officer who aided in the fatal restraining of George Floyd was sentenced Friday to 3½ years in prison for his role in the murder.

J. Alexander Kueng pleaded guilty to being an accessory to second-degree manslaughter on the day his state trial was due to begin last October. 25, 2020, death that sparked international protests against police brutality.

Kueng appeared remotely from the US Bureau of Prisons Elkton facility in Lisbon, Ohio, where he is serving a three-year federal sentence for violating Floyd’s civil rights. He did not address the court.

“Nothing, Your Honor, thank you,” he said when asked if he had any comments.

There was no formal victim impact statement.

“The conviction of Alexander Kueng for his role in the murder of George Floyd is another piece of justice for the Floyd family,” attorneys Ben Crump, Antonio Romanucci and Jeff Storms, representing Floyd’s family, said in a statement.

“As the family faces another holiday season without George, we hope that moments like these continue to bring them a measure of peace, knowing that George’s death was not in vain.”

A harrowing video taken by a bystander showed Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, desperately begging the officers who stopped him to let him breathe before he passed out and died.

Kueng was one of four officers fired and facing criminal charges following Floyd’s death. The city of Minneapolis last year agreed to pay Floyd’s estate $27 million to settle a lawsuit with his family.

“I really can’t fathom what George Floyd’s family and friends had to go through,” prosecutor Matthew Frank told the court before he was sentenced.

“It’s not just watching a video of your loved one dying and seeing it on TV over and over again. During these two and a half years, during all the legal proceedings, we think of them often and we wish them well in healing and progress.”

Frank said Floyd was a “crime victim” and Kueng “wasn’t just a spectator to what happened that day.”

“Mr. Kueng was an active part of this,” he added.

Defense attorney Thomas Plunkett said police chiefs “failed” both Floyd and Kueng by not adequately training officers.

Kueng received credit for 84 days served. Judge Peter Cahill ruled that he should not own firearms and ammunition for the rest of his life.

His sentencing Friday was delayed several hours due to technical difficulties with the web conference.

Kueng, who helped restrain Floyd when Officer Derek Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, and another officer, Tou Thao, who fended off angry witnesses pleading with police to get rid of Floyd, were both convicted of federal charges in the murder. They were found guilty on charges of violating Floyd’s civil rights and failing to intervene to restrain Chauvin during the detention.

Kueng was sentenced to three years and Thao was sentenced to 3 ½ years. Keung will serve his state sentence concurrently with his federal sentence.

The two former officers began serving those sentences in October, according to the federal Bureau of Prisons.

Chauvin was found guilty in state court of second-degree accidental murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter and was sentenced in June 2021 to 22.5 years in prison.

In federal court, Chauvin pleaded guilty to depriving Floyd of his rights and an unrelated civil rights violation was sentenced to 21 years in prison. He is serving the sentences at the same time.

Thomas Lane, de The fourth officer, who held Floyd’s legs during the arrest, pleaded guilty to being an accessory to second-degree summer manslaughter and was sentenced to three years in prison in September. He’s serving that concurrently with a two-and-a-half-year federal sentence in Colorado.

Kueng was initially scheduled to go on trial with Thao in October.

According to his attorney, Robert Paule, Thao agreed to a trial based on certain evidence, which meant that he waived his right to a jury trial and that the court would decide Thao’s fate after considering the allegations made by both parties. evidence.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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