George Floyd case: AG Barr promises 'justice will be served' amid nationwide protests

Attorney General Bill Barr released a statement on Saturday addressing the death of George Floyd, who died at the hands of law enforcement when Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on his neck.

“The greatness of our nation comes from our commitment to the rule of law," the statement began.

"The outrage of our national community about what happened to George Floyd in Minneapolis is real and legitimate. Accountability for his death must be addressed and is being addressed, through the regular process of our criminal justice system, both at the state and at the federal level."

He continued: "That system is working and moving at exceptional speed. Already initial charges have been filed. That process continues to move forward. Justice will be served."

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On Friday afternoon, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced that Chauvin had been charged with 3rd-degree murder and manslaughter.

Freeman claimed the evidence against Chauvin includes video footage from a bystander's cell phone, body camera footage, witness statements, and a preliminary medical examiner report.

Barr's statement continued, "Unfortunately, with the rioting that is occurring in many of our cities around the country, the voices of peaceful protest are being hijacked by violent radical elements. Groups of outside radicals and agitators are exploiting the situation to pursue their own separate and violent agenda.

"In many places, it appears the violence is planned, organized, and driven by anarchistic and far-left extremists, using Antifa-like tactics, many of whom travel from out of state to promote the violence."

The attorney general said government officials from across the country, throughout various law enforcement agencies, stand ready to help any local entities that are in need of assistance with enforcing the law and maintaining public order.

"We must have law and order on our streets and in our communities, and it is the responsibility of the local and state leadership, in the first instance, to halt this violence," he wrote.

Barr added, "In that regard, it is a federal crime to cross state lines or to use interstate facilities to incite or participate in violent rioting. We will enforce these laws.”

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Floyd, 46, died while in police custody Monday evening. He had been arrested after a grocery store clerk called the authorities to accuse him of attempting to spend a counterfeit $20 bill.

The three other officers who were at the scene were Tou Thao, Thomas Lane, and Alexander Kueng. All four men have been fired from the police department.

Following a Friday tweet from President Trump where he threatened to intervene if local leaders couldn't control the situation, Gov. Tim Walz announced Saturday that he had authorized "full mobilization" of the state's National Guard -- something that has never been done in the Minnesota National Guard's 164-year history.

Fox News' David Spunt and Barnini Chakraborty contributed to this report

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