On Tuesday, Fox News host Tucker Carlson reacted to the leaked body camera footage from two officers involved in the arrest of George Floyd, hitting prominent Democrat Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison for refusing to release the footage.
Floyd died in police custody at the end of May following an arrest that went viral on social media. A partial clip of the arrest, showing an officer holding his knee over the 46-year-old’s neck for several minutes, sparked national outrage and unrest, including mass protests and acts of vandalism, rioting, and looting.
AG Ellison did not release the bodycam video from the officers involved in the arrest.
On Monday, however, the Daily Mail released leaked footage taken from the body cameras of Officers Thomas Lane, 37, and Alex Kueng, 26, after responding to a call that Floyd was allegedly using counterfeit money at Cup Foods.
As noted by The Daily Wire, the footage shows Floyd acting in an erratic manner that prompts police to question if he is intoxicated and includes Floyd resisting attempts to get him in the back of the police car, citing his “claustrophobia,” “anxiety,” previously having “COVID,” and his difficulty breathing. Floyd eventually begins yelling that he “can’t breathe” and saying he’d prefer to be on the ground than in the car.
“Why haven’t we seen the rest of the video until right now?” questioned the “Tucker Carlson Tonight” host. “The video seems relevant, particularly considering all that has happened next.”
“And the answer to why we haven’t seen it is simple,” Carlson continued. “Because Keith Ellison – he’s the attorney general of Minnesota – hid the video from the public; he refused to release the footage, and he admitted it.”
The Fox host then showed a clip of Ellison from early June explaining to The Washington Post his decision to withhold the body cam footage from the public.
“I’m a firm believer in transparency, and the public’s right to know, but a higher priority for me is a successful prosecution,” the AG told The Washington Post. “Therefore, I’ll consult with our lead investigators and I’ll say to them, ‘When can we release this information to the public and still safeguard the prosecution?’ If we can do it before [trial], I would have no problem with doing that, but I am reluctant to do anything that would undermine the prosecution of this case.”
Carlson mocked Ellison, “Right. ‘I’m a firm believer in transparency and the public’s right to know,’ says Keith Ellison.”
“But apparently that’s not true,” Carlson asserted. “Videos like this are released all the time by authorities. In this case, it was hidden, and in fact, if it weren’t for a leak to a foreign newspaper, we wouldn’t have seen that video.”
Ellison is leading the prosecution of the police officers accused of killing Floyd.
“Holding these four individuals accountable is a necessary part of establishing equality before the law for all people,” Ellison told the Financial Times this week. “We need a lot more than a conviction in this case, but we do need to hold these individuals accountable. … It’s a necessary but insufficient condition to try to establish justice.”
“Floyd’s death has been used to justify a nationwide convulsion of violence, destruction, looting, in some cases killing,” Carlson said earlier in his show, adding, “In addition to unprecedented levels of political upheaval, the wholesale reordering of our most basic institutions. Floyd’s death changed everything. It was a pivot point in American history. No matter what side you’re on, that’s very clear at this point. So with all of that in mind … it’s striking how little we really know months later about how exactly George Floyd died.”
“You can decide for yourself what you think of that video,” he added. “And we hope that you will. That’s the whole point of having a news network, to bring you the facts and allow you to decide what they amount to. We hope that takes place in this case.”
Tucker talks about newly released police bodycam footage from moments before George Floyd’s death. pic.twitter.com/A3ylnxFg1i
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) August 5, 2020
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