Eight Black Minnesota corrections officers filed a racial discrimination lawsuit for allegedly being barred from guarding Derek Chauvin at the detention center where they work.
The eight non-white guards filed the lawsuit against the Ramsey County Adult Detention Center for allegedly providing only white corrections officers to guard Chauvin.
Chauvin, 44, has been held at the detention center since May 29 on charges of felony murder in the death of George Floyd in south Minneapolis on May 25.
The corrections officers said Superintendent Steve Lydon ordered all non-white officers and the Black officers were told to avoid contact with Chauvin.
In the discrimination lawsuit, Lydon allegedly said the officers’ race made them a potential “liability” if anything were to happen to Chauvin after he arrived at the facility.
“I understood that the decision to segregate us had been made because we could not be trusted to carry out our work responsibilities professionally around the high-profile inmate — solely because of the color of our skin,” said the acting sergeant, who is Black.
He added: “I am not aware of a similar situation where white officers were segregated from an inmate.”