Local Club Owner Says Minneapolis Cop And George Floyd Worked Together

In a twist to ongoing developments in the case involving Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who pinned 46-year-old George Floyd to the pavement for several minutes until he died, it appears as though the two men worked together.

The Epoch Times reported Friday that both men were employed as security by the El Nuevo Rodeo club in the state capital, according to former bar owner Maya Santamaria, who owned the establishment for 20 years before selling it a few months ago.


“Chauvin was our off-duty police for almost the entirety of the 17 years that we were open,” Santamaria told KTSP. “They were working together at the same time, it’s just that Chauvin worked outside and the security guards were inside.”

She added that it isn’t certain that both men actually knew each other.

“If they would have crossed paths, it probably would not have been something they remembered,” she told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

The Epoch Times noted further:

One possible time they might have come into contact: at the end of a night when Chauvin came inside to get paid, and others were there waiting to get paid. Floyd could also have run outside when an altercation occurred there and assisted Chauvin.

“It certainly wasn’t something that made them, perhaps, recognize each other,” she continued.

Santamaria added that Chauvin had a short fuse and often pulled out his mace to spray people even when she did not think it was appropriate or necessary. 

But Andrea Jenkins, a Minneapolis City Council member, said she believes the men did know each other.

“They were both bouncers at that restaurant for 17 years. So, officer Chauvin, he knew George,” she said in an interview with MSNBC. “They were co-workers for a very long time.”

The Epoch Times noted that, according to records accessed online, 17 complaints had been filed against Chauvin during his police career (he was fired almost immediately after video of his arrest of Floyd went viral). All of those cases were eventually closed but two, and they only led to letters of reprimand. 

Meanwhile, officer Tou Thao, who was also fired and stood by while Chauvin allegedly choked Floyd to death, had received six complaints. Five have been closed while one case is still open.

“The officers, according to the complaints, failed to file a police report, used a higher level of force than was needed in arresting someone, and treated victims of crimes rudely,” The Epoch Times reported.

Chauvin was arrested Friday and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. 

“We have now been able to put together the evidence that we need. Even as late as yesterday afternoon, we did not have all that we needed,” said Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman. “This is by far the fastest that we’ve ever charged a police officer.”

For the record, Floyd was charged with forgery. Police were called to Cup Foods at the intersection of Chicago Avenue and East 38th Street on Monday after Floyd reportedly paid for his items with a fake $20 bill.

Hardly the crime of the century.

We won’t rush to judgment here because no one should. But barring any new video or other information exonerating Chauvin, he appears to have really stepped over the line, and we’re not the only ones who think so. Even a former congressman and U.S. attorney, Trey Gowdy, believes as much.