03 June 2020

Mother of George Floyd's daughter overcome with emotion as she speaks publicly for first time since his death

Roxie Washington, the mother of George Floyd’s six-year-old daughter, has called for justice in her first media appearance since his death on May 25.

The 36-year-old addressed reporters in Minneapolis accompanied by their daughter Gianna and a close friend of Floyd’s, former NBA player Stephen Jackson.

Floyd died after a police officer knelt on his neck and held him down during an arrest last week- an event which has sparked violent riots, as well as peaceful demonstrations across the world.

Roxie Washington, Floyd's 6-year-old daughter Gianna, and Stephen Jackson accompanied by Washington's attorneys (SIPA USA/PA Images)

An emotional Washington said she was finding it difficult to put her thoughts into words but said she wanted ’everybody to know what these officers took’.

"Gianna does not have a father. He will never see her grow up, graduate. He will never walk her down the aisle.

“If there’s a problem she’s having and she needs her dad, she does not have that anymore," she added.

"I’m here for my baby and I’m here for George because I want justice for him because he was good and this is the proof,” she said as she gestured to their young daughter.

The heartbroken mother then became overcome with emotion and stood down from the lectern.

Attorney Chris Stewart said: "The image most of us have of George Floyd is the horrible video that we’ve seen. 

"We’ve seen the anger in the streets, we’ve seen so much violence.

“We’ve seen beauty also. We’ve seen people standing up and speaking up," he added.

“What we really wanted the world to see is the beauty of their child.”

White police officer Derek Chauvin has since been fired and on Friday was charged with third-degree murder.

Protesters marched on Washington in the wake of Floyd's death (TT News Agency/PA Images)

Floyd’s friend Jackson was carrying Gianna in his arms as he entered the rotunda at City Hall and vowed to be the one to help raise her now that his childhood friend is gone.

“I’m going to walk her down the aisle. I’m going to be there for her. I’m going to be there to wipe the tears,” Jackson said.

The two grew up together in Houston.

“His whole reason to come (to Minneapolis) was to be a better father, be a better provider. He was doing his part,” Jackson said.

“I’m through crying. I’m ready to fight. I’m ready to stand for my brother. I’m ready to get justice for my brother.”

Floyd also has a 22-year-old daughter from a previous relationship.

The news conference came shortly after the Minnesota Department of Human Rights (MDHR) revealed they had pressed charges against the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD).

Jackson comforts Washington as he holds Gianna (SIPA USA/PA Images)

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