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George Floyd: ‘Pandemic of racism’ led to his death, memorial told – Top stories this morning – BBC

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A lawyer for George Floyd has told a memorial service that a “pandemic of racism” led to his death.

Those gathered at Thursday’s tribute stood in silence for eight minutes, 46 seconds, the amount of time Floyd was alleged to be on the ground under the control of police in Minneapolis.

Hundreds attended the service, which also heard a eulogy from civil rights activist Rev Al Sharpton.

It was time to stand up and say “get your knee off our necks”, he said.

Mr Floyd’s killing, which was captured on video, has caused outrage and sparked a wave of protests in cities across the US.

Meanwhile, a few blocks away, three police officers charged with aiding and abetting Mr Floyd’s murder made their first appearance in court. Bail was set at $1m (£800,000) but would be lowered to $750,000 if they handed in any guns they owned and met other conditions, the judge said.

Derek Chauvin, the officer who continued to kneel on Mr Floyd’s neck as he pleaded that he could not breathe, has been charged with second-degree murder and is due to appear in court on Monday.

The vast majority of demonstrations over the past eight days have been peaceful, but some have descended into violence and rioting, with curfews imposed in a number of cities.

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