Tou Thao, the fourth policeman involved in the arrest that ended in the death of George Floyd, was sentenced to four years and nine months for his actions during the arrest. Thao acted, in his words, "like a human traffic cone" to prevent bystanders from approaching. The judge finds, however, that his attitude was "objectively unreasonable from the perspective of a reasonable police officer," so he found him guilty of "aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter." The three and a half years the former officer has been serving will be deducted from the last sentence.
Tou Thao — the fourth former Minneapolis Police officer to face state charges for holding back the crowd surrounding George Floyd’s fatal arrest in 2020 — has been sentenced to 4 years & 9 months in prison for aiding & abetting second-degree manslaughter. https://t.co/ScS40T3gD3
— Ben Crump (@AttorneyCrump) August 7, 2023
"My conscience is clear"
Before learning of the sentence, Thao assured that his conscience "is clear" because he did not commit the crimes of which he is accused. "I did not commit those crimes. My conscience is clear. I will not be a Judas or join a mob in self-defense or betray my God," he said.
Following these statements, Judge Peter Cahill noted that "After three years of reflection, I was hoping for a little more remorse, regret, acknowledgment of some responsibility, and less preaching. I’m not going to rehash all the facts from my order, which I found that the things you did and the things you didn’t do made you guilty of this crime."
Specifically, in his auto in May, Cahill found Thao guilty of being an accessory to second-degree murder because the former police officer "was under a duty to intervene to stop other officers' excessive use of force and was trained to render medical aid..." during George Floyd's arrest.