UNITED STATES – A black man has died after a white police officer was seen kneeling on his neck for several minutes during his arrest in Minneapolis, United States.
The incident which happened on Monday has taken the life of a man which was identified as George Floyd.
Video footage taken by a bystander emerged on Tuesday showing a white cop pinning Floyd to the ground moments before he loses consciousness and dies.
Floyd, who was arrested on suspicion of forgery, is heard repeatedly telling officers that he cannot breathe as he lay next to the tire of a squad car.
‘Please. Please, I can’t breathe,’ Floyd, who is shirtless, begs the two cops.
‘My stomach hurts. My neck hurts. Everything hurts.’
The incident has sparked an investigation by FBI and state law enforcement authorities into the man’s death.
It has also drawn comparisons to the case of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man who died in 2014 in New York after he was placed in a chokehold by police and pleaded for his life, saying he could not breathe.
On Tuesday, the attorney representing the family of Ahmaud Arbery announced he has been retained by Floyd’s family.
The Minneapolis Police Department confirmed the man died in a statement later that night, after the arresting officers responded to a ‘forgery in progress.’
Police found the man, believed to be in his 40s, matching the suspect’s description in his car.
‘He was ordered to step from his car. After he got out, he physically resisted officers,’ police spokesman John Elder claimed in a statement.
‘Officers were able to get the suspect into handcuffs and noted he appeared to be suffering medical distress.’
The man, who was not identified, was taken by ambulance to Hennepin County Medical Center where he died a short time later, police said.
But in the footage, the arresting police officer was seen pinning the man to the ground for more than six minutes as he pleaded with officers to release him.
The officer continues to kneel on the man’s neck for several minutes while he moans in pain.
The video was shared on Facebook by bystander Darnella Frazier, and has drawn comparisons to the case of Eric Garner.
Garner, who had been arrested for selling loose cigarettes in Staten Island, was repeatedly heard saying ‘I can’t breathe’ while being held down by cops.
In Monday’s video, multiple witnesses are heard arguing with the two arresting officers over their excessive use of force.
‘Bro, you’ve got him down at least let him breathe, man,’ a male onlooker says.
‘He’s not even resisting arrest … he’s human, bro.’
One of the officers then replies: ‘This is why you don’t do drugs, kids.’
‘This ain’t about drugs, bro! He’s human,’ the bystander says.
‘You’re enjoying it. Look at you. Your body language, you bum. You know that’s bogus right now,’ he adds.
About four minutes into the video, the man appears to begin to lose consciousness before becoming unresponsive.
An ambulance then arrives and police officers move the man’s limp body onto a stretcher.
‘You just really killed that man, bro,’ the male onlooker says.
‘And if he’s not dead, he’s close to death, that’s crazy,’ Frazier adds.
The video, which has been shared more than 15,000 times on Facebook, has sparked outrage among viewers on social media.