Minneapolis, MN – A Hennepin County judge cited safety concerns and issued new conditions of release for the former Minneapolis cop charged with the murder of George Floyd that will allow him to live out of state until his trial.
Former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was released from jail on a $1 million bond on Wednesday and his release sparked another round of violent riots in the city.
Fifty-one protesters were arrested on Oct. 7 after rioters tried to set fire to the 5th Precinct using commercial grade fireworks and other explosives.
Minnesota National Guard troops have been mobilized to assist local law enforcement as the violent protests continue.
On Friday, Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill said the Minnesota Department of Corrections (DOC) expressed concerns for Chauvin’s safety while he is awaiting trial, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
Cahill said the corrections department presented evidence in private “supporting safety concerns that have arisen” but did not detail what the evidence was.
The judge’s initial release conditions for Chauvin had required the former police officer to stay in Minnesota pending trial, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
The new terms announced on Oct. 9 said the former officer “must establish residency somewhere in the State of Minnesota or a contiguous state as soon as possible” and tell the DOC officers supervising where he’s going.
Only local law enforcement will be given the new address, which will be kept confidential, according to the judge’s order.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune also reported that Cahill ordered Chauvin to have a cellphone and keep it on, charged, and in range of a signal so he can be reached by DOC at all times.
The judge said both defense attorneys and prosecutors had agreed to the revised terms of Chauvin’s release.
Chauvin was arrested on May 29 and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in connection with Floyd’s death during his arrest. His charges have since been upgraded to second-degree murder.
On June 3, former Minneapolis Police Officers Tou Thao, Thomas Lane, and J. Alexander Kueng were charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder for their role in Floyd’s arrest.
The officers had responded to a call about a counterfeit $20 that Floyd had allegedly used to make a purchase at a deli.
Store employees pointed out the suspect to police and they arrested him.
The complaint used to charge Chauvin said Floyd actively resisted arrest and then fought being put in the back of a police car once he had been handcuffed.
Viral cell phone video showed then-Officer Chauvin and three other officers holding Floyd on the ground.
The video showed Officer Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes, during which time the suspect lost consciousness.
Chauvin remained on Floyd’s neck for almost three minutes after he was unresponsive.
Former Officer Thao’s attorneys have filed a motion to dismiss the two aiding-and-abetting charges citing a lack of probable cause.
An attorney for one of the other officers charged in Floyd’s death filed a motion to dismiss the charges against his client, too, on Aug. 18 claiming that Floyd had actually overdosed on fentanyl while resisting arrest.
The judge has not yet decided whether he will allow the former Minneapolis police officers’ cases to be separated for trial.
Attorneys for the other three former officers charged in connection with Floyd’s death want Chauvin to go to trial first and have argued that if he is not convicted, the charges against all three other officers should not stand.