– You called the policemen “bitch”, right?
– Hmm … I got quite angry after they put Mr. Floyd in the ambulance and it no longer made sense to reason with them because they had just killed someone
10 months ago, Genevieve Hansen, a firefighter and emergency medical technician, walked down Chicago Avenue and 38 in Minneapolis when she saw a police patrol and walked over to see if she knew any officers or needed assistance. The 27-year-old woman was off duty and when she approached the scene she was ordered to step aside. Dressed in her firefighter uniform, Hansen was the last witness to take the stand this Tuesday in the trial against Derek Chauvin, accused of murdering George Floyd on May 25. “There was a man who was being killed,” Hansen testified, adding that she could have provided medical care, but that Floyd “was denied that right.”
When prosecutors asked her how she felt about not being able to assist the African American, Hansen burst into tears and replied that she was “totally distraught.” “I begged them, I was desperate to help,” she added. The firefighter recriminated before the jury for not calling the emergency service 911 for paramedics to come as soon as she saw how Chauvin dug his knee into Floyd’s neck. Asked what he could have done if the police had allowed him to assist the detainee, Hansen replied that he would have checked if he suffered from a spinal cord injury due to the enormous weight he carried on his neck, he would have opened his airways to check if he had Some obstruction and I would have checked her pulse. If he couldn’t find one, he would have started compressions. She was trained to do all of these tasks, but officers stopped her and an hour after they took Floyd to the hospital, he died.
It was evident to Hansen that Floyd’s state of consciousness was “altered” because he did not move even when Chauvin leaned his body more strongly towards his neck. “Those are painful stimuli,” explained the firefighter in the Hennepin County courthouse, adding that she uses this technique – nailing a fingernail – when looking for someone’s response. “Tell me what his pulse is right now!” Hansen yelled at the officers while filming the scene where other passersby also pressured them to leave Floyd alone as he claimed he couldn’t breathe.
Eric Nelson, the attorney for the ex-cop, questioned Hasen about how much it would cost him to do his job if he had a dozen people yelling at him or even threatening him. She replied that she would not mind because she was confident in the training she had received and in her ability to properly fight a fire. The defendant’s defense insisted on cornering her there, until the witness replied: “Your question is imprecise because you don’t know [lo que hago] in my work ”, causing murmurs in the courtroom, which is with a reduced capacity due to the pandemic.
When Floyd was taken away, Hansen called 911. The recording was heard by jurors on Tuesday, showing his distress. “I literally saw the police officers not take his pulse and do nothing to save a man,” accused the firefighter, making it clear that she had everything on tape. When asked by Chauvin’s attorney if the people who had gathered around the scene were disturbed, Hansen replied, “I don’t know if you’ve seen someone die, but it’s disturbing.”
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.