George Floyd's 6-year-old daughter Gianna won't have him around to walk her down the aisle or see her succeed in school, her mother said at a news conference Tuesday to speak about the kind of man Floyd had been before he died in police custody in Minneapolis last week.
“Gianna does not have a father,” Roxie Washington said through tears as the 6-year-old girl clung to her. “He will never see her grow up, graduate. He will never walk her down the aisle. If it’s a problem she’s having and she needs her dad, she does not have that anymore.”
Washington was visibly upset during the press conference, which was later posted by The Sun, as she remembered the man who had moved to Minneapolis from his home in Texas to work and better provide for his family.
“I am here for my baby and I am here for George because I want justice for him. I want justice for him ‘cause he was good. No matter what anybody thinks, he was good,” Washington said.
Washington said Floyd had always taken care of his daughter.
"He loved her," she said. "He loved us so much.”
Shocking video showed the circumstances of Floyd's death: the 46-year-old was handcuffed and pinned to the ground with a Minneapolis police officer—later identified as Derek Chauvin—pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes as Floyd pleaded for his life and told Chauvin he couldn’t breathe.
The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office has classified Floyd’s death a homicide, according to a report released Monday.
Chauvin has been arrested and is facing charges of third-degree homicide and second-degree manslaughter in the death—which has sparked violent protests across the country.
Attorney Justin Miller said Washington wanted to come forward to humanize the man who has become a symbol for injustice in the black community.
“This battle, this fight is not over and today we just want to show the world that George Floyd is not just a name, not just a meme and not just something to be chanted,” Miller said during the press conference. “George Floyd was a real person. He was a good person and he had people that loved him.”
Miller’s law partner Chris Stewart also addressed the “anger in the streets” that has erupted in the days since Floyd’s death.
“Everybody at home is wondering why riots are happening, why protesting is happening. It is because situations like this do not get addressed,” he said.
Stewart also questioned why no charges have been filed against the three other officers who were at the scene the day Floyd died.
“No one is saying that every police officer out there is out to try and kill somebody but when someone does do something, when someone crosses the line, they have to go through the system and be held accountable. How is that not fair?” he said. “We hope to see further steps so that this never happens again.”
Former NBA player Stephen Jackson also advocated for justice for Floyd, who was a close friend, saying at the press conference that he was “ready to fight.”
“I am ready to stand for my brother,” he said. “I am ready to get justice for my brother.”
Jackson said that Floyd had decided to leave Texas to move to Minneapolis to find better work opportunities so that he could provide for his family.
“His whole reason for being in Minnesota was to work and drive trucks. That’s why he came here and he was doing that. He was doing great here,” he said. “He was turning the curve and then this happens.”
Jackson also said he planned to be there for Floyd’s loved ones who had been left behind.
“I’m going to walk her down the aisle, I’m going to be there for her,” he said of Floyd’s daughter while addressing Washington. “I’m going to be here to wipe your tears, you understand, I am going to be here for you and Gigi.”
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