El Nuevo Rodeo: George Floyd and Derek Chauvin worked overlapping security shifts in the same club

Unrest, fires and violence as protests rage across US
Derek Chauvin and Floyd worked safely in the El Nuevo Rodeo club, just down the road from Minneapolis Third district, according to Maya Santamaria, a former club owner who has sold the venue in recent months.

Floyd, whom Santamaria called a “good guy” known for his big smile, often worked as an extra security guard on Tuesdays when the club organized famous “urban” musical nights. Chauvin has been an off-duty police officer for the club for nearly 17 years.

“I wouldn’t characterize them as getting to know each other,” Santamaria told CNN’s Josh Campbell in an interview. “We all worked together in the club at different times, certainly on Tuesdays and in the evenings. We all worked on the same team.”

Santamaria added: “We all worked together on certain nights and they would cross roads.”

Chauvin is charged with murder and third-degree murder in connection with Floyd’s death, according to Hennepin County prosecutor Mike Freeman. Chauvin was taken into custody by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension on Friday as the fires continued to burn from violent protests overnight as protesters called for justice for Floyd.

For Santamaria, seeing the video showing Floyd handcuffed and lying on the ground saying “I can’t breathe,” while Chauvin holds him down with one knee on Floyd’s neck was shocking.

“I didn’t understand what I was seeing,” said Santamaria. “I kept screaming on my phone telling Chauvin to leave. It’s horrible. It’s absolutely beyond words. And having known Chauvin, I can’t believe he didn’t have humanity to listen to this poor man who begged for his air and his life “.

Floyd’s death sparked protests in Minneapolis and other cities in the United States. More than 500 staff members of the Minnesota National Guard were mobilized in various locations in the Minneapolis area as protesters looted businesses and set fire to a police district.
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