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Unrest flares in U. S. cities despite arrest of Minneapolis policeman

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The white former Minneapolis police officer shown in video footage using his knee to pin an unarmed black man’s neck to the street was charged with murder on Friday in the man’s death, an incident that has unleashed four nights of violent protests.
The white former Minneapolis police officer shown in video footage using his knee to pin an unarmed black man’s neck to the street was charged with murder on Friday in the man’s death, an incident that has unleashed four nights of violent protests.
Derek Chauvin, who was dismissed from the police department with three fellow officers the day after the fatal encounter, was arrested on third-degree murder and manslaughter charges for his role in Monday’s death of 46-year-old George Floyd.
Graphic video footage taken by an onlooker’s cell phone and widely circulated on the internet shows Floyd – with Chauvin’s knee pressed into his neck – gasping for air and repeatedly groaning, “Please, I can’t breathe,” while a crowd of bystanders shouted at police to let him up.
After several minutes, Floyd gradually grows unresponsive and ceases to move. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital a short time later.
The video reignited an outpouring of rage that civil rights activists said has long simmered in Minneapolis and cities across the country over persistent racial bias in the U. S. criminal justice system.
The charges brought by Hennepin County prosecutors came after a third night of arson, looting and vandalism in which protesters set fire to a police station, and the National Guard was deployed to help restore order in Minnesota’s largest city.
Authorities had hoped Chauvin’s arrest would allay public anger and avert continued unrest. But defying an 8 p.m. curfew imposed by Mayor Jacob Frey, about 500 demonstrators clashed anew Friday evening with riot police outside the battered Third Precinct building.
Police, creating a two-block buffer area around the precinct house, opened fire with tear gas, plastic bullets and concussion grenades, scattering the crowd.

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