Mississippi Mayor Accused of Saying George Floyd’s Arrest Was Not Unreasonable And That “If You Can Talk, You Can Breathe”
- Hal Marx, Mayor of Petal, made the comments in a tweet on Wednesday
- Defended fired Minneapolis police involved in the death of George Floyd
- “I haven’t seen anything unreasonable,” Marx said of a video of Floyd’s fatal arrest
- I thought if Floyd could say “I can’t breathe,” his airway would be unobstructed
A Mayor in Mississippi has come under fire for his comments about George Floyd’s death in detention in Minneapolis, saying he “saw nothing unreasonable” in the arrest.
Petal Mayor Hal Marx, about 150 miles southeast of Jackson, made the comments on Twitter on Wednesday, but has since deleted the tweets and said he had been misinterpreted.
“I haven’t seen anything unreasonable. If you can say you can’t breathe, you breathe, “Marx wrote of Floyd’s arrest, captured on a video of the bystander showing a police officer kneeling in the 46-year-old’s neck while groaning:” I can not breathe. ‘
Marx continued, “The man probably died of an overdose or heart attack. Video does not show his resistance that put him in that position. The police are crucified. ‘
Hal Marx, Mayor of Petal, about 90 miles southeast of Jackson, has come under fire for his comments about George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis custody
The video shows that Floyd becomes immobile and first responders found that he was unresponsive and without a pulse. He was pronounced dead in a hospital about an hour later, and his cause and manner of death are still pending at the medical examiner’s office.
Marx tried to explain that no one knew for sure how Floyd died or what the circumstances were before he was pushed to the ground by a Minneapolis police officer.
“I think people judge the police so quickly before they have all the facts,” he told the Hattiesburg American.
“I can’t say if there was a crime or if they did something right or wrong, I’m just saying don’t judge quickly based on what you see in that video.”
However, his comments immediately backfired.
“If you live in the town of Petal, near Hattiesburg, your primary goal should be to get Hal Marx IMMEDIATELY out of the office,” tweeted author Tyler J. Carter.
Agent Derek Chauvin (pictured) was identified as the officer who pinned him down in video footage that was widely shared on Tuesday
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Attacking lineman for Indianapolis Colts Javon Patterson tweeted, “You know, as a former resident of Petal … this is really disturbing to watch. To know that a community leader is okay with even posting this. ‘
Anthony Alford, an outfielder for the Toronto Blue Jays and a graduate of Petal High School, also responded.
“How can you watch this video and comment on such an idiot,” Alford wrote on Facebook.
The city of Petal published a statement on Facebook on Wednesday saying that Marx’s comments were “ not representative of all our city leaders. ”
“We understand the frustrations his statements cause,” the city councilors wrote. “Those comments are his personal views and he has the right to share his views on his personal page.”
Marx told the Hattiesburg American that his remarks had been falsely cast as racist.
“I have seen too many cases where the police were found guilty of the public but were later found not guilty by law,” he said.
“To steer that, I suddenly have to be called racist, I have to have a knee around my neck – all kinds of spiteful things, just to have an opinion and ask people to find out all the facts before they judge.”