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Thomas Lane, One of Four Ex-Cops Charged in George Floyd’s Death, Is Out of Jail


Thomas Lane

Thomas Keirnan Lane, one of the four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the alleged murder of George Floyd, is out of jail. Hennepin County records show that Lane bonded out Wednesday afternoon.

As part of his conditional release on a $750,000 bond, court documents say Lane had to agree not to have contact with the victim’s family, not to possess guns or ammo, and not to work as a police officer or security guard. On top of that, Lane had to surrender his permit to carry, waive extradition, and submit to a supervised release.

Lane was charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter. He and J. Alexander Kueng were the two officers seen holding Floyd’s back during an arrest. Lead defendant Derek Chauvin was the one shown on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes. A fourth officer, Tou Thao, stood between the police and outraged bystanders.

Prosecutors used videos from the scene to conclude Chauvin kneeled on Floyd’s neck for a prolonged 8 minutes and 46 seconds, some of it after Floyd became unresponsive.

Lane was hired by the department in February 2019. His attorney, Earl Gray, has said Lane had only been on active duty for four days as of the incident. Because of that, Gray argued, it was “unreasonable” to expect Lane to attempt to remove Chauvin’s leg from Floyd’s neck. The lawyer also asserted that Lane asked Chauvin if Floyd should be rolled over and that Lane tried to perform CPR on Floyd in the ambulance.

“What was my client supposed to do but follow what his training officer said?” Gray said. “Is that aiding and abetting a crime?”

Minneapolis police policies require “every sworn employee present at any scene where physical force is being applied to either stop or attempt to stop another sworn employee when force is being inappropriately applied or is no longer required.”

Colin Kalmbacher and Aaron Keller contributed to this report.

[Mugshot via Hennepin County]

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