Tou Thao the former Minneapolis police officer who prevented bystanders from intervening during the May 2020 murder of George Floyd has been convicted of aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.
Judge Peter Cahill wrote that Thao “actively encouraged his three colleagues’ dangerous prone restraint of Floyd” contrary to his training that the positioning could cause fatal asphyxia.
“Like the bystanders, Thao could see Floyd’s life slowly ebbing away as the restraint continued,” Cahill wrote in the verdict.
“Yet Thao made a conscious decision to actively participate in Floyd’s death: he held back the concerned bystanders and even prevented an off-duty Minneapolis firefighter from rendering the medical aid Floyd so desperately needed.”
Tou Thao’s conviction marks the end of a series of state and federal trials for all four former officers who played a role in the murder of George Floyd.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said:
The conviction of Tou Thao is historic and the right outcome. It brings one more measure of accountability in the tragic death of George Floyd. Accountability is not justice, but it is a step on the road to justice.
Derek Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter in state court.
He was sentenced to 22.5 years in prison in June 2021.
Chauvin also pleaded guilty to depriving George of his rights and an unrelated civil rights violation in federal court.
He was sentenced to 21 years in prison and is serving both sentences concurrently.
Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng, and Tou Thao were convicted of violating George Floyd’s civil rights and of failing to intervene to stop Chauvin during the restraint.
Thao is already serving a 3.5-year sentence for his federal conviction.
He faces 41 to 57 months in prison on the aiding and abetting conviction.
Sentencing is set for August 7.
In light of his conviction, I’d like to run back an old clip of me talking about “Looking @ss Thao.”