George Floyd and the police officer that killed him worked in the same restaurant for 17 years
Mr Floyd, an unarmed black man, died in police custody on Monday after four Minneapolis Police Department officers arrested him.
Now, the owner of a Mexican-themed entertainment venue claims that she employed both Mr Floyd and the cop who kneeled on the 46-year-old’s neck, at the same time last year.
The ex-Minneapolis Police Department officer, Derek Chauvin, was dismissed along with three other officers for his actions this week, which have led to demonstrations across the country and a row between Donald Trump and Twitter after the social media company red-flagged his threat to shoot anyone looting during the protests.
“Chauvin was our off-duty police for almost the entirety of the 17 years that we were open,” said Maya Santamaria in comments made to KSTP News.
“They were working together at the same time, it’s just that Chauvin worked outside and the security guards were inside.”
Ms Santamaria owned and managed the El Nuevo Rodeo club on Lake Street for almost two decades, but sold it some months ago.
She added that despite the fact that Mr Floyd and Mr Chauvin worked overlapping shifts at the music venue last year, she could not confirm whether they knew each other.
Some events, continued Ms Santamaria, would have seen more than a dozen security guards and off-duty officers on one night alone.
“My friend sent me [the video] and said this is your guy who used to work for you and I said, ‘It’s not him.’ And then they did the closeup and that’s when I said, ‘Oh my God, that’s him,’” Ms Santamaria told the news outlet.
“I didn’t recognise George as one of our security guys because he looked really different lying there like that,” she added.
It has also emerged that Mr Chauvin had been the subject of 18 complaints whilst employed with Minneapolis police, as protests continue in the wake of the death,