Ex-NBA player Stephen Jackson says Minneapolis policeman who killed George Floyd deserves death penalty

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Former NBA player Stephen Jackson is calling for capital punishment for the police officer who killed his friend.

“I know we not going to get the death penalty, but I’m going for it,” Jackson said Thursday morning on Power105. “Because the only way that they can stop killing us is if they see one of their own sitting at the chair and fry for something they did and knowing that could be them.

“We had to see it, the world had to see it, my brother die then the world has to see one of them die. That’s the only way we’re going to get justice.”

Jackson said he was close with George Floyd, the man who was killed this week under the knee of Minneapolis policeman Derek Chauvin. Both Jackson and Floyd are from the Houston area and, given their resemblance, the basketball player referred to his friend as ‘Twin.’

Jackson, who played for eight different teams in a 12-year NBA career, said he was “destroyed” by the video of brutality during Floyd’s arrest.

“I jumped up, screamed. Scared my daughter. Almost broke my hand punching stuff because I was so mad,” he told NBC’s “Today.”

In the 10-minute video filmed by a witness, Floyd was kept on the ground with Chauvin’s knee pressed against his neck despite pleading, “I can’t breathe,” and “Don’t kill me.”

Jackson said he understood the level of his friend’s distress when Floyd began screaming for his late mother.

“I knew that was a cry for help,” Jackson said. “I’m a strong black man and I know Floyd. We don’t scream our mother’s name like that unless we know something is wrong and our life is in jeopardy and we can’t control it. … We’re going to get change. Some way or other, we’ve got to get this figured out.”

The police officers were responding to a report of a customer attempting to use a counterfeit $20 bill at a store. All four officers involved were fired.

The incident prompted mass protests in Minneapolis, with reports of looting and arson. Jackson urged peaceful protests.

“Honestly, he would be happy that people are fighting for him, but that’s not the way he’d want to do it,” Jackson said. “Floyd would want everybody standing together and fighting for justice, and that’s it. He wouldn’t want to see innocent people get hurt. He used to baptize people.”


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