Events mark anniversary of George Floyd’s death: Live updates

KEREM YUCEL/AFP via Getty Images

(NEW YORK) — Activists are continuing their quest for police reform and social and racial justice on the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death.

Floyd was killed on May 25, 2020, by former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin after he was accused of using a counterfeit $20 bill at a Cup Foods.

His death sparked nationwide protests that persisted in major cities for much of the summer, despite a raging pandemic.

Floyd’s family met with President Joe Biden Tuesday and other prominent lawmakers to push for the passage of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which aims to address “a wide range of policies and issues regarding policing practices and law enforcement accountability.”

May 25, 8:46 pm
Peaceful rallies held across the nation

Thousands of people rallied in locations around the country to mark the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death.

In Brooklyn, crowds gathered outside Barclays Center before the Nets’ playoff game and marched along Atlantic Avenue calling for an end to police violence.

In Boston, two major marches took place in the afternoon and evening.

“Not enough progress. Not enough progress, which is why [we’re marching],” Karen Groce-Horan, executive director and co-founder of Courageous Conversations Milton, told Boston ABC affiliate WCVB.

At Leimert Park in Los Angeles, some kneeled for just over nine minutes to mark the amount of time former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin had his knee on Floyd’s neck.

Most of the rallies went off without incident, according to reports.

May 25, 8:42 pm
Crump vows to return to DC every week with Floyd family

During an impromptu press conference at Black Lives Matter Plaza, the family of George Floyd, standing alongside lawmakers, answered questions following their trips to Capitol Hill and the White House.

Family attorney Benjamin Crump told ABC News the Floyd family and others plan to be back in D.C. regularly.

“The family has committed, as well as other families have said, they will come to Washington, every week, if need be to get proper legislation that will prevent other families from having to go through what they’re going through,” he said.

When asked by ABC News about a new timetable for legislation for the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, Crump declined to give an exact date.

“We don’t want to pigeonhole them,” he said. “What we want is a good bill, and they’re working as hard as they have told us they’re working. We’re going to get there sooner rather than later.”

-ABC News’ Beatrice Peterson

May 25, 7:16 pm
Floyd family meets with GOP senators over police reform bill

George Floyd’s family met with GOP Sens. Tim Scott and Lindsey Graham on Tuesday evening for about an hour to discuss the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.

Family attorney Benjamin Crump told reporters the senators felt that they are “the closest they’ve ever been,” on making a deal.

“Everybody’s engaged and saying, ‘We can do better to solve this American issue.’ And the only way we can solve it is working together. It hasn’t worked for us 50 years trying to work apart,” Crump said.

Crump added that Scott told the family, “He can see the light at the end of the tunnel and asked us to stay encouraged.”

Scott didn’t give more details about the meeting but told reporters he was encouraged by the family’s thoughts.

“I think we’re we’re making the kind of progress that we need to make. I’m happy that the family stopped by,” he said.

-ABC News’ Trish Turner

May 25, 5:51 pm
Darnella Frazier, witness who filmed George Floyd’s arrest, reflects on anniversary

Darnella Frazier, the bystander who filmed the most famous video of George Floyd’s arrest and death at the hands of former police officer Derek Chauvin, issued a statement reflecting on the one-year anniversary.

Frazier, who was 17 at the time of the incident, said Floyd’s death has profoundly changed her life and how she views the world.

“It made me realize how dangerous it is to be Black in America. We shouldn’t have to walk on eggshells around police officers, the same people that are supposed to protect and serve,” she said in her statement.

Frazier was walking with her 9-year-old cousin when they witnessed the police arrest Floyd. She said she and her cousin still deal with trauma from watching Floyd die.

Frazier said she still has panic attacks anytime she sees a police car.

“A lot of people call me a hero even though I don’t see myself as one. I was just in the right place at the right time,” she said. “I’m a girl trying to heal from something I am reminded of every day.”

Frazier expressed her condolences to Floyd’s family.

“I can’t express enough how I wish things could have went different, but I want you to know you will always be in my heart. I’ll always remember this day because of you,” she said.

May 25, 4:24 pm
President Biden issues statement about meeting with Floyd family

President Biden, who has suffered several personal losses himself, said in a statement he related to the Floyd family in their first year of loss, as they relived Floyd’s death with every play of the video of his arrest.

“The Floyd family has shown extraordinary courage, especially his young daughter Gianna, who I met again today,” the president added.

Biden reiterated his support for the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act and appreciated “the good-faith efforts from Democrats and Republicans to pass a meaningful bill out of the Senate.” He called on Congress to act quickly to pass the legislation.

“We face an inflection point. The battle for the soul of America has been a constant push and pull between the American ideal that we’re all created equal and the harsh reality that racism has long torn us apart,” Biden said.

May 25, 4:29 pm
Crump gives update on George Floyd bill

Attorney Benjamin Crump told reporters outside the White House following a meeting between President Biden and the Floyd family that the president is not looking for a “rushed” bill.

“He said that he doesn’t want to sign a bill that doesn’t have substance and meaning, so he is going to be patient, to make sure it’s the right bill,” Crump said.

Philonise Floyd, George’s brother, pleaded with Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.

“If you can make federal laws to protect the bird which is the bald eagle, then you can make federal laws to protect people of color,” he said.

At the White House, George Floyd’s family and their legal team raise a fist to commemorate the first year since his death.

His daughter, Gianna Floyd led the call to “say his name.” pic.twitter.com/eKq21kvgwz

— Molly Nagle (@MollyNagle3) May 25, 2021

Floyd’s daughter, Gianna, led the call to “say his name” before leaving the White House.

May 25, 3:40 pm
Floyd’s family meets with President Joe Biden, lawmakers on Capitol Hill

Floyd’s family, along with their attorney, Benjamin Crump, attended a closed meeting with President Joe Biden at the White House Tuesday afternoon.

It’s been one year since George Floyd was murdered. In that time, George’s family has shown extraordinary courage. Last month’s conviction was a step towards justice – but we cannot stop there.

We face an inflection point. We have to act.

— President Biden (@POTUS) May 25, 2021

President Biden and his team have been “closely engaged” with negotiators on the George Floyd bill but are “respecting the space” negotiators need to work out the details, White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Tuesday afternoon.

Prior to meeting the president, Floyd’s family also spoke with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Karen Bass.

“What we hope to do at all of those meetings is to continue to say, let’s don’t lose this moment. It’s been 57 years since we’ve had meaningful police reform,” Crump said Tuesday morning on SiriusXM’s The Joe Madison Show. “And this is our moment to finally pass some federal legislation with teeth in it.”

The Floyds, along with NAACP President Derrick Johnson, are also set to meet with Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C.

“It is critical that the bill is substantive and that we get it right,” Johnson said in a statement Tuesday. “We want the right bill, not a rushed bill.”

May 25, 3:14 pm
Congressional Black Caucus chair urges Senate to act on George Floyd bill

Congressional Black Caucus Chair Joyce Beatty called on the Senate to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act in a new statement released Tuesday.

Beatty named other Black Americans who were killed by the police in the last couple of years, including Breonna Taylor, Daunte Wright, Adam Toledo, Andre Hill, Casey Goodson Jr., Ma’Khia Bryant and Tamir Rice.

“Unfortunately, nothing will ever bring them back or undo the unimaginable heartache and loss their family, friends, and our communities have had to endure, but we can turn agony into action,” Beatty said in a statement. “The American people are demanding change, transparency, accountability, and equal justice.”

May 25, 2:12 pm
Black communities have been ‘gaslit’ for 100 years: Minnesota AG

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison released a statement Tuesday stating that black people have been dying at the hands of police for the past century and the time for “meaningful change” is now.

For 100 yrs, we have been caught in a cycle of police-involved deaths that➡️uprising & protest➡️ commissions & studies➡️inaction➡️more death. We can break this cycle: the moment for making change is now. My stmt on the anniversary of George Floyd’s death. https://t.co/eYpkyqJiAa

— Attorney General Keith Ellison (@AGEllison) May 25, 2021

“African American communities have been gaslit by people in authority for 100 years: they have been repeatedly told that state-sanctioned violence in their communities is their fault and that they are the criminals, not the ones committing the crimes against them,” Ellison said. “But this time, the witnesses to George Floyd’s death and everyone in the world who watched their videos refused to be gaslit. They believed their eyes.”

Ellison called on legislators on every level to break the cycle and for Americans of all backgrounds to end racism and white supremacy once and for all.

“For a century, and despite the best efforts of many, America has chosen inaction over climbing this mountain,” Ellison said. “But the other side of this mountain is better — not only for African Americans, but for everyone.”

May 25, 1:55 pm
Shots fired near George Floyd square

Shots were fired roughly one block away from what is informally known as George Floyd square, according to officials. A city spokesperson told ABC affiliate KSTP-TV in Minneapolis that one person was being treated for a gunshot wound at a local hospital.

Philip Crowther, an Associated Press journalist, reported hearing as many as 30 gunshots about a block east of the intersection. He said a storefront window appeared to have been broken by a gunshot.

“Very quickly things got back to normal,” Crowther said.

May 25, 1:18 pm
Court to hear arguments on need for a public inquiry in Eric Garner’s 2014 death

On the anniversary of Floyd’s murder in Minneapolis, a New York appellate court will hear arguments on the need for a public inquiry into the 2014 death of Eric Garner, whose dying words “I can’t breathe,” the same as Floyd’s, became a national rallying cry.

A lower court allowed for a judicial inquiry beginning in July, siding with the Racial Justice Project at New York Law School, which said the Garner family has endured “nearly seven years of false promises about transparency” from top city officials.

“It is difficult to conceive of a matter more worthy of transparency: a police killing of an unarmed civilian, preceded by a questionable stop, followed by inadequate medical treatment,” the Racial Justice Project said in a filing to the Appellate Division.

The City of New York conceded Garner’s death “is of singular importance to his family, his community, the City, and indeed the nation” but is appealing to stop the inquiry because the incident has already been well-documented.

“There has already been a public trial covering seven days, 15 witnesses, and a thousand transcript pages,” the city noted.

-ABC News’ Aaron Katersky

May 25, 12:44 pm
Floyd’s family announces fund for neighborhood where he was killed

A fund has been created by Floyd’s family to benefit the predominately black community of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue, near the Cup Foods where Floyd was killed.

The fund will award grants to eligible businesses, community organizations and 501(c)(3) organizations serving the community.

“His family has been touched by the strength, the spirit, and the need in that community,” Benjamin Crump, the family’s attorney, said in a statement.

Floyd’s family will direct $500,000 of the $27 million settlement they received from the city of Minneapolis to the fund.

-ABC News’ Sabina Ghebremedhin

May 25, 12:36 pm
Chuck Schumer mentions Floyd’s name on Senate floor

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer commemorated Floyd on the one-year anniversary of his death by acknowledging the massive social justice movement that was born as a result.

“This was not only a fight for justice for one man and his family, who I’ve had the privilege to meet with, but a fight against the discrimination that black men and women suffer at the hands of state power, not just here in America, but around the globe,” Schumer said. “It is a fight that continues today.”

Schumer also recalled the “stomach-churning video” of Floyd’s death, which was played numerous times during Derek Chauvin’s murder trial.

“George Floyd was murdered in broad daylight by a police officer sworn to protect and serve our country was forever changed by the stomach-churning video of Derek Chauvin killing Mr. Floyd,” Schumer said.

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., are working on bipartisan police reform legislation, Schumer said, but gave no details on what the legislation will look like or when it may be ready for consideration by the Senate.

-ABC News’ Allison Pecorin

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