The former Minneapolis police officer charged with the murder of George Floyd has been released from prison after posting bond.
Derek Chauvin, 44, was released from the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Oak Park Heights on Wednesday morning, the Department of Corrections confirmed.
The ex-cop walked free after posting a non-cash $1million bond signed by A-Affordable Bail Bonds, Inc, online court records show.
Chauvin had been in custody at the maximum security prison since May 31 after video showed him pressing his knee onto Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes shortly before his death.
He is charged with second and third degree murder as well as second-degree manslaughter. His bail was initially set at $1.25million or $1million with conditions.
Fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin (left) was released from prison on Wednesday after posting non-cash bond
Chauvin was charged with murder and manslaughter in May after viral footage showed him pressing his knee against George Floyd’s neck shortly before he died
Court records show Chauvin was released after posting $1million non-cash bond, guaranteed by Allegheny Casualty Company
A release receipt posted by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office showed Chauvin was freed at 11.22am.
Under the conditions of his release, he must attend all court appearances and cannot have any direct or indirect contact – including social media – with any members of Floyd’s family.
He is also not permitted to work in law enforcement or security, and must not possess any firearms ammunition.
Floyd’s death was captured in widely seen bystander video that set off protests against police brutality and racial injustice around the world.
Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, died on May 25 while being arrested for using a counterfeit $20 bill at a local Minneapolis deli.
Pictured (left to right): Former officers Derek Chauvin, J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao in their mugshots. The three other cops have been charged with aiding and abetting
Chauvin made his first in-person appearance (pictured) in court last month after previously appearing via videolink
Chauvin appeared in court for the first time on September 11, 2020 in Minneapolis. He is awaiting trial set for March 8
Chauvin, who is white, knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes, causing Floyd to pass out, while three other responding officers stood by.
All four cops were fired from Minneapolis Police Department after footage of the fatal confrontation went viral.
Former officers Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao have been charged with aiding and abetting.
The three officers previously posted bail amounts of $750,000 and have been free pending trial.
Currently, all four men are scheduled to face trial together on March 8, but the judge is weighing a request to have them tried separately.
Chauvin made his first in-person appearance in court last month after previously appearing via videolink.
Wearing an orange prison jumpsuit, face mask and handcuffs, he was led away by correction officers after the three hour hearing, as protesters near the court shouted abuse at him.
During the hearing, the judge presiding over the case dismissed the local prosecutor from the murder trial, accusing him and his team of ‘sloppy’ work.
Floyd’s death was captured in widely seen bystander video that set off protests against police brutality and racial injustice around the world
Nationwide demonstrations overtook the United States this summer after George Floyd was killed in police custody on Memorial Day
Mike Freeman, Hennepin County attorney, was removed from the case along with the three other members of his team.
Judge Peter Cahill said that Freeman acted in error by sending his staff to speak to the medical examiners following Floyd’s death, without having any independent witnesses to their discussion.
‘It was sloppy not to have someone present,’ said Cahill. ‘Those four attorneys are off the case. They are now witnesses.’
The medical examiner’s verdict is expected to play a key, and highly controversial, role in the trial.
The Hennepin County medical examiner’s office said Floyd experienced cardiopulmonary arrest while being restrained by the officer.
Their autopsy said Floyd had ‘other significant conditions’ including coronary artery disease and hypertensive heart disease, plus ‘fentanyl intoxication; [and] recent methamphetamine use.’
An independent autopsy conducted by Dr Allecia Wilson and Dr Michael Baden, commissioned by the family, said he died as a direct result of the way he was arrested.