By Alex Hider
President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris met privately with the family of George Floyd and their attorneys at the White House on Tuesday, a year to the day after Floyd was murdered in police custody in Minneapolis.
Following the hour-long meeting at the White House, Floyd’s brothers Philonise and Rodney, his nephew Brandon Williams, his partner Roxy and his daughter, Gianna, briefly spoke to reporters.
“It was great. He’s a genuine guy, he always speaks from the heart,” Philonise Floyd said.
“We’re thankful they showed great concern,” Rodney Floyd said.
The family also called for the passage of meaningful police reform legislation.
“If you can make federal laws to protect the [national] bird, which is the bald eagle, you can make federal laws to protect people of color,” Philonise Floyd said.
Ben Crump, an attorney representing the Floyd family, added that Biden had discussed a police reform bill during the meeting, saying that Biden promised to hold out for meaningful legislation that is not “rushed.”
Gianna Floyd also led the family in a “say his name” chant following the meeting.
Floyd died in the custody of Minneapolis police on May 25, 2020. Police were called to the scene after Floyd allegedly attempted to buy tobacco with a counterfeit $20 bill at a local convenience store.
After police arrived on the scene, they attempted to take him into custody. Amid Floyd’s struggle with police, a bystander video showed three officers used their body weight to keep Floyd pinned to the ground while a fourth officer looked on.
One of those officers, Derek Chauvin, kept his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes while Floyd struggled to breathe.
Floyd was later pronounced dead at a local hospital. Chauvin was convicted of murdering Floyd last month following a weeks-long trial. He’ll be sentenced later this year.
The other three now-former officers involved in the deadly arrest will stand trial on charges of aiding and abetting murder later this year.
Floyd’s death sparked several months of protest. While protests across the country grew violent in late May, a vast majority of demonstrations throughout the summer months remained peaceful.
Reposted with permission from WCPO 9 Cincinnati.