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Officer who held back crowd during George Floyd’s murder convicted of aiding and abetting manslaughter

(CNN) — A Minnesota judge found former Minneapolis police officer Tou Thao guilty of aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter for his role in the May 2020 killing of George Floyd, according to court documents filed Monday.

In a 177-page verdict, 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.”

The decision marks the end of a series of state and federal trials for the four former officers involved in Floyd’s death, a killing captured on video that set off worldwide protests objecting to police violence against Black people.