MINNEAPOLIS (Reuters) – U.S. protests over the death of a black man in custody dwindled overnight into early Thursday after prosecutors leveled new charges against four Minneapolis policemen implicated in the killing.
Huge crowds have defied curfews and taken to the streets of cities across the country for nine nights in sometimes violent protests that prompted President Donald Trump to threaten to send in the military.
George Floyd, 46, died after a white policeman pinned his neck under the officer’s knee for nearly nine minutes in Minneapolis on May 25, propelling the issue of racial justice to the top of the political agenda five months before the presidential election on Nov. 3.
Former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, after long refusing to explicitly criticize a sitting president, denounced a militarization of the response to civil unrest. Current Defense Secretary Mark Esper also said he did not back the use of troops to patrol the country.