International News

Sniper teams and an elite Border Patrol unit ‘were deployed at George Floyd’s Texas burial’

0
sniper-teams-and-an-elite-border-patrol-unit-‘were-deployed-at-george-floyd’s-texas-burial’

At least six sniper teams, an elite Border Patrol unit and a FBI surveillance aircraft were deployed at George Floyd‘s Texas burial, records show. 

Officials had authorized the use of deadly force at the service in Pearland in June; a presentation on law enforcement preparation detailed officers being ‘stationed for a quick response to rioting and looting’, Vice News reports.

Floyd, who was black and handcuffed, died May 25 after a white Minneapolis police officer used his knee to pin down on his neck for several minutes as Floyd begged for air and eventually stopped moving.  

Records show officials had placed snipers on rooftops at his burial and called in 66 members of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC).   

At least six sniper teams, an elite Border Patrol unit and a FBI surveillance aircraft were deployed at George Floyd’s Texas burial, records show. People watch as a horse drawn hearse containing the remains of Floyd passes by during a funeral procession on June 9

Records show officials placed snipers on rooftops and called in 66 members of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC), above in file photo

The BORTAC teams are heavily armed units are similar to police SWAT teams. 

BORTAC agents undergo a ‘grueling’ training program designed to ‘mirror aspects’ of U.S. Special Operation Forces courses, according to details about the program published on the CBP website. The unit was launched in 1984 in response to rioting at immigration detention facilities. 

CBP’s tactical unit was told ‘deadly force is authorized anytime’ in the event of aggressive behavior, documents obtained via a public records request filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas show. 

They were prepared to ‘take up positions around Pearland PD to prevent property loss or damage’ if ‘non-peaceful protesting’, records show.  

People watch as the horse drawn hearse containing the remains of George Floyd makes its way to the Houston Memorial Gardens cemetery on June 9

CBP’s tactical unit was told ‘deadly force is authorized anytime’ in the event of aggressive behavior, documents obtained via a public records request filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas show. They were prepared to ‘take up positions around Pearland PD to prevent property loss or damage’ if ‘non-peaceful protesting’, records show

Houston police officers who had escorted the hearse with the casket of George Floyd stand outside of the Fountain of Praise church where his memorial and funeral services will be held on June 8

Agent Alex Suarez with the U.S. Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC) guards the U.S. side of the border wall with Mexico in Brownsville, Texas, U.S. October 17, 2018

More than 500 mourners wearing masks against the coronavirus packed a Houston church for the service. 

Afterwards, Floyd’s golden casket was taken by hearse to the cemetery in the Houston suburb of Pearland to be entombed next to his mother, for whom he cried out as he lay dying.  

A mile from the graveyard, the casket was transferred to a glass-sided carriage drawn by a pair of white horses. A brass band played as his casket was taken inside the mausoleum. Hundreds of people, some chanting, ‘Say his name, George Floyd,’ gathered along the procession route and outside the cemetery entrance.

Pearland had planned for 60,000 mourners with $30,000 spent on ‘bike rack-style barricades’ along the burial procession route, according to reports. A total of $326,000, in mostly police overtime, was spent by the city of Pearland for Floyd’s burial. 

Floyd’s family attorney, Ben Crump, told Vice they were not told sniper units or CBP agents would be at the burial. 

Floyd, who was black and handcuffed, died May 25 after a white Minneapolis police officer used his knee to pin down his neck for several minutes as he begged for air and eventually stopped moving

A spokesman for city told Vice: ‘The mission of all personnel was to provide a safe environment for the Floyd family to conduct their service in peace.

‘Just because nothing happened doesn’t mean there weren’t credible threats. We plan for a variety of potential outcomes to be as prepared as possible.’

The FBI’s Houston division said in a statement: ‘FBI assistance was provided to the Pearland Police Department, at the request of that agency, for the purpose of maintaining and ensuring the safety of the participants and the general public.’      

Floyd’s funeral capped six days of mourning in three cities: Raeford, North Carolina, near where he was born; Houston, where he grew up; and Minneapolis, where he died.

Dozens of Floyd’s family members, most dressed in white, took part in the four-hour service. Grammy-winning singer Ne-Yo was among those who sang.

The mourners included actors Jamie Foxx and Channing Tatum, J.J. Watt of the NFL’s Houston Texans, rapper Trae tha Truth, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, who brought the crowd to its feet when he announced he will sign an executive order banning chokeholds in the city. 

Four Minneapolis officers were arrested in his death: Derek Chauvin, 44, was charged with second-degree murder. J

Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao were charged with aiding and abetting. All four could get up to 40 years in prison. 

A Texas Highway Patrol officer watches as a horse drawn hearse containing the remains of George Floyd drives past on its way to the Houston Memorial Gardens cemetery on June 9

Prince Harry and William’s rift is worse than you think says Royal biographer Robert Lacey

Previous article

Kim Foxx drops out of debate after name-calling from Republican rival

Next article

You may also like

Comments

Leave a Reply