A New Start Turns to a Tragic End for George Floyd, Who Moved to Minneapolis Determined to Turn His Life Around After Being Released from Prison in Texas
Daily Mail, May 28, 2020
George Floyd moved to Minnesota to start a new life shortly after being released from prison in Texas, but his pursuit of a better life ended tragically when he died during a violent arrest, according to court records obtained by DailyMail.com.
Floyd was left gasping for breath when a white officer kneeled on his neck for eight minutes while arresting him for allegedly paying with a fake $20 bill at a convenience store on Monday evening.
All four cops involved in his arrest have been fired as outraged citizens across the country demand they be charged over the father-of-two’s death.
None of the officers could have been aware of Floyd’s more than a decade-old criminal history at the time of the arrest.
The 46-year-old moved to the city in 2014 and worked as a bouncer at a local restaurant, leaving behind his past in the Houston area.
Floyd had made changes to his lifestyle and a recent video has emerged of him pleading with younger generations to make good choices and to stop gun violence.
He had been there himself years ago, first being arrested in his 20s for theft and then a later arrest for armed robbery before he turned his life around.
The final straw for Floyd came after serving five years in prison in 2009 for aggravated assault stemming from a robbery in 2007 where he entered a woman’s home, pressed a gun into her stomach and searched the home for drugs and money, according to court records.
Floyd pleaded guilty to the robbery where another suspect posed as a worker for the local water department, wearing a blue uniform in an attempt to gain access to the woman’s home, according to the charging document.
But when the woman opened the door, she realized he was not with the water department and attempted to close the door, leading to a struggle.
At that time, a Ford Explorer pulled up to the home and five other males exited the car and went up to the front door.
The report states the largest of the group, who the victim later identified as Floyd, ‘forced his way inside the residence, placed a pistol against the complainant’s abdomen, and forced her into the living room area of the residence.
‘This large suspect then proceeded to search the residence while another armed suspect guarded the complainant, who was struck in the head and sides by this second armed suspect with his pistol while she screamed for help.’
Not finding any drugs or money at the house, the men took jewelry and the woman’s cell phone and fled in their car. A neighbor who witnessed the robbery took down the car’s license plate number.
Later, police tracked down the car and found Floyd behind the wheel. He was later identified by the woman as the large suspect who placed a gun against her stomach and forced her into her living room, the document states.
Floyd pleaded guilty to the first degree felony and was sentenced in April 2009 to five years in prison.
Prior to that, Floyd was sentenced to 10 months in state jail for possession of cocaine. He had been charged in December 2005 for having less than one gram of the controlled substance.
However, a few months later the charge was updated to possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, amending the amount Floyd allegedly had to more than four grams of cocaine.
But according to court records, Floyd was able to have the charge reverted back to possession of cocaine less than a gram.
Floyd had two other cocaine offenses, receiving an eight month-sentence stemming from an October 2002 arrest and was sentenced to 10 months from a 2004 arrest.
Floyd was arrested in April 2002 for criminal trespassing and was sentenced to 30 days in jail.
He did another stint for theft with a firearm in August 1998. He served 10 months at Harris County jail.
In one of the charging documents, officials noted Floyd had two convictions in the 1990s for theft and delivery of a controlled substance, but it is not clear if Floyd served any time for either of those offenses.
After his last arrest in 2007, Floyd moved to Minneapolis in 2014 shortly after his prison release.
Christopher Harris, one of Floyd’s lifelong friends, said Floyd moved to the city to start over to find a job, telling the Atlanta Journal Constitution: ‘He was looking to start over fresh, a new beginning. He was happy with the change he was making.’
Indeed, it seems that Floyd had turned his life around before his death on Monday.
A heartbreaking video emerged online of Floyd encouraging the younger generation to put an end to gun violence.
The undated video was circulated on Twitter on Wednesday as protesters descended on the streets of Minneapolis for a second night calling for the arrest of the cops involved in his death.
Floyd is seen addressing the camera directly as he speaks out about the need for gun violence to end.
‘It’s clearly the generation after us that’s so lost, man,’ he says before telling them to ‘come home’.
Floyd, a father of two, died after a white police officer knelt on his neck for eight minutes in an incident that was captured on video and has sparked violent protests and riots in the city that left one looter dead.
In widely circulated footage of his arrest, Floyd was seen on the ground with his hands cuffed behind his back as white officer Derek Chauvin pinned him to the pavement until he lost consciousness and later died.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said on Thursday that he considers Floyd’s death to be a murder.
‘I’m not a prosecutor, but let me be clear. The arresting officer killed someone,’ he told CBS.
‘He’d be alive today if he were white.’ The facts that I’ve seen, which are minimal, certainly lead me down the path that race was involved.’