We could virtually eliminate the majority of police crimes against persons by simply de-criminalizing ALL MISDEMEANOR OFFENSES, except for violent misd. offenses. Instead of arrest, the subject could be issued a summons to court. It’s actually the constitutional and right thing to do as well. The murder of George Floyd is a prime example of such an unnecessary misdemeanor arrest resulting in the killing of George Floyd.
It is more than worth mentioning that the arrest of George Floyd was most likely unlawful and certainly unwarranted. Floyd’s arrest was definitely unnecessary and moreover, evidence of the bad faith of the arresting officers at best. What usually happens around that neighborhood and in that corner store is, if the clerk encounters what the clerk may believe is a counterfeit bill the clerk summons the police, the police arrive and DO NOT ARREST THE SUBJECT; but instead engage in investigative questioning for the purpose of providing source info for the Secret Service, who are the ONLY trier of fact in issuing a determination whether or not a currency piece is counterfeit or not.
In fact, in Minneapolis when an Arrested Person is booked into county jail on an instant offense NOT RELATED TO COUNTERFETING, they are booked into jail and their personal property is put in storage. If jail personnel or the arresting officer suspect that the currency the Arrested Person brought to jail may be counterfeit, the Secret Service is contacted for further investigation.
The Arrested Person is NOT charged with any counterfeit-related offense UNTIL, IF AND WHEN the Secret Service make a determination whether or not the currency is counterfeit or not.
Considering these facts and procedures, why did the arresting officer arrest George Floyd and charge him with a counterfeiting offense WITHOUT anyone contacting the Secret Service or the Secret Service making a determination as to the veracity of the $20 bill? Why did the cops arrest George Floyd considering arresting someone for presenting a single bill is NOT the routine practice and custom of the Minn. Police Dept? According to my research, NO ONE has ever been arrested in the last 20 years in Minneapolis for presenting a single possible counterfeit bill to any establishment. Most cities, including Minn. DO NOT arrest anyone for presenting a single possible counterfeit bill to an establishment. The custom and practice in Minneapolis re: 911 report of a possible counterfeit bill is for the responding officer to take the subject’s information down in a report for further investigation by the Secret Service. Instant arrests are not usually made, in fact if ever at all.
Take a look at Denver Police Dept. procedures re: counterfeiting >>>
BUT FOR the unnecessary minor misdemeanor arrest of Floyd, George Floyd would still be alive. Take a look at the relevant information regarding George Floyd’s arrest:
(from USA TODAY)
Floyd allegedly used a counterfeit bill to buy cigarettes at the convenience store last week. The clerk reported it to police, a step that management described as store policy in Facebook posts. Four police officers arrived for what is now a notorious arrest, captured on video by bystanders. Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes, and Floyd was declared dead shortly thereafter.
His death was ruled a homicide. Chauvin and three other Minneapolis police officers were fired; Chauvin faces criminal charges.
“It went from a counterfeit bill, to a man being killed, to millions of people around the nation just hurting,” Hill said. “Then to people being angry and responding in a militant way and destroying, burning cities. Then to a grieving and trying to protest.”
“You just think about that, all from a counterfeit bill,” Hill said.
In Minnesota, the highest penalty for knowingly using counterfeit money less than $1,000 is up to 1 year in prison and a fine up to $3,000.
What happened to that bill?
Public officials have been mum on the location of the alleged counterfeit bill, citing ongoing investigations and lawsuits.
A spokesman for the Minneapolis Police Department referred a reporter to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.
“Under Minnesota law, the BCA is unable to discuss evidence or details of an open and active investigation,” wrote BCA Public Information Officer Jill Oliveira in an email response to USA TODAY.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison will help prosecute Chauvin, who is charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Spokesman John Stiles said officials couldn’t comment on investigative data.
What did the bill look like?
In the 911 transcript a Cup Foods clerk told the dispatcher: “Um, someone comes our store and give us fake bills and we realize it before he left the store, and we ran back outside, they was sitting on their car.”
A former employee and customer of the shop Angel Stately told the New York Times she saw the bill and the ink was running on it. Stately could not be reached for additional comment.
Cup Foods owner Mahmoud Abumayyaleh questioned whether Floyd even knew he used a counterfeit, in a statement posted on Facebook Sunday.
He told TRT, a Turkish public broadcast service, that normally officers ask a few questions about counterfeits, “put it in a bag and take it.”
“As a check-cashing business, this is a routine practice for us: we report forged money, then the police come and ask patrons about the bill to trace its origin. Upon receiving a counterfeit bill from George Floyd, one of our employees called the police in accordance with this procedure,” according to the statement on Facebook.
Abumayyaleh and the store’s spokesman did not respond to messages seeking additional comment.
Abumayyaleh was not at the store during the incident, according to his statement. The business has been open for more than three decades and Abumayyaleh has expressed grief and outrage over what happened to Floyd: “There is no justification for the use of reckless force displayed by the police that murdered George Floyd.”
Other issues with counterfeits?
Dalfonzo Credit described the alleged fake $20 bill as a “nudge” that pushed police over the edge. He lives in the area and said Floyd’s death is not the first problem with the Minneapolis Police Department.
“It kind of feels like a drop in the bucket,” Credit said. He’s never seen a $20 counterfeit, but he’s seen other fakes.
“Most stores are catching bills nowadays. It’s never been a problem where the police have been called,” he said.
Hamza Refaya, owner of Mill City Auto Body less than a block north of Cup Foods, and his brother-in-law Moses Wazwaz, said they have not had any issues with counterfeits or heard of any issues with them before Floyd’s arrest and death.
Cubtan Nur runs a business a few doors south of Cup Foods called Axis Home PCA Agency, which does not rely on cash transactions. She’s been there two years.
“This is the first time I’m hearing (about counterfeits),” Nur said.
Minneapolis Criminal Code
609.632 COUNTERFEITING OF CURRENCY.
Subdivision 1. Manufacturing; printing. Whoever, with the intent to defraud, falsely makes, alters, prints, scans, images, or copies any United States postal money order, United States currency, Federal Reserve note, or other obligation or security of the United States so that it purports to be genuine or has different terms or provisions than that of the United States Postal Service or United States Treasury is guilty of counterfeiting and may be sentenced as provided in subdivision 4.
Subd. 2. Means for false reproduction. Whoever, with intent to defraud, makes, engraves, possesses, or transfers a plate or instrument, computer, printer, camera, software, paper, cloth, fabric, ink, or other material for the false reproduction of any United States postal money order, United States currency, Federal Reserve note, or other obligation or security of the United States is guilty of counterfeiting and may be sentenced as provided in subdivision 4. Subd. 3.Uttering or possessing. Whoever, with intent to defraud, utters or possesses with intent to utter any counterfeit United States postal money order, United States currency, Federal Reserve note, or other obligation or security of the United States, having reason to know that the money order, currency, note, or obligation or security is forged, counterfeited, falsely made, altered, or printed, is guilty of offering counterfeited currency and may be sentenced as provided in subdivision 4.
Subd. 4.Penalty. (a) A person who is convicted of violating subdivision 1 or 2 may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 20 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $100,000, or both.
(b) A person who is convicted of violating subdivision 3 may be sentenced as follows:
(1) to imprisonment for not more than 20 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $100,000, or both, if the counterfeited item is used to obtain or in an attempt to obtain property or services having a value of more than $35,000, or the aggregate face value of the counterfeited item is more than $35,000;
(2) to imprisonment for not more than ten years or to payment of a fine of not more than $20,000, or both, if the counterfeited item is used to obtain or in an attempt to obtain property or services having a value of more than $5,000, or the aggregate face value of the counterfeited item is more than $5,000;
(3) to imprisonment for not more than five years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both, if:
(i) the counterfeited item is used to obtain or in an attempt to obtain property or services having a value of more than $1,000 or the aggregate face value of the counterfeited item is more than $1,000; or
(ii) the counterfeited item is used to obtain or in an attempt to obtain property or services having a value of no more than $1,000, or the aggregate face value of the counterfeited item is no more than $1,000, and the person has been convicted within the preceding five years for an offense under this section, section 609.24; 609.245; 609.52; 609.53; 609.582, subdivision 1, 2, or 3; 609.625; 609.63; or 609.821, or a statute from another state or the United States in conformity with any of those sections, and the person received a felony or gross misdemeanor sentence for the offense, or a sentence that was stayed under section 609.135 if the offense to which a plea was entered would allow the imposition of a felony or gross misdemeanor sentence; or
(4) to imprisonment for not more than one year or to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000, or both, if the counterfeited item is used to obtain or in an attempt to obtain property or services having a value of no more than $1,000, or the aggregate face value of the counterfeited item is no more than $1,000.
§Subd. 5. Aggregation; venue. In any prosecution under this section, the value of the counterfeited United States postal money orders, United States currency, Federal Reserve notes, or other obligations or securities of the United States, offered by the defendant in violation of this section within any six-month period may be aggregated and the defendant charged accordingly in applying the provisions of this section. When two or more offenses are committed by the same person in two or more counties, the accused may be prosecuted in any county in which one of the counterfeited items was forged, offered, or possessed, for all of the offenses aggregated under this subdivision.
Minneapolis Police Procedures
10-407.01 Counterfeit Currency(12/14/07) All suspected counterfeit currency shall be inventoried separate from other currency, anddetailed by denomination and serial number. On a regular basis, the United States Secret Serviceobtains and analyzes suspected counterfeit U.S. Currency from the Property and Evidence Unit. If suspected counterfeit currency is determined to be authentic, the Property and Evidence Unitshall make the proper notifications and release the currency to the rightful owner.