Colin Kaepernick: Campaign to Pay for Legal Defense for Arrested MN Protesters

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 29, 2020

RIVERDALE, GA - NOVEMBER 16: Colin Kaepernick looks on during his NFL workout held at Charles R Drew high school on November 16, 2019 in Riverdale, Georgia. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

Quarterback Colin Kaepernick announced Friday the Know Your Rights Camp, a campaign he founded to "advance the liberation and well-being of Black and Brown communities," has started an initiative to provide legal representation for protesters in Minnesota following George Floyd's death.

"In fighting for liberation there's always retaliation," Kaepernick wrote on Twitter. "We must protect our Freedom Fighters. We started a legal defense initiative to give legal representation to Freedom Fighters in Minneapolis paid for by [Know Your Rights Camp]."

Floyd's death Monday while in the custody of the Minneapolis Police Department has sparked national outrage and tense protests locally.

Video of the incident showed officer Derek Chauvin with his knee on Floyd's neck for an extended period while arresting him after police received a call about an alleged forgery. Floyd said he was in pain and couldn't breathe before being transported to a local hospital where he was declared dead, per CNN.

Chauvin, along with the three other officers involved in the incident, was fired Tuesday. He was arrested Friday and faces charges that include third-degree murder:

Good Morning America @GMA

BREAKING: Derek Chauvin, the arresting officer involved in the death of George Floyd, has been charged with third degree murder as well as manslaughter, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announces. https://t.co/FAV8Slh5VZ https://t.co/po0Wl8VxVM

Kaepernick started a movement in 2016 to kneel during the United States national anthem to protest racial injustice and police brutality.

"I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color," he told NFL Media at the time. "To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."

Kaepernick has remained a free agent since March 2017 despite consistently stating his desire to play football again.

Last month, the 32-year-old Wisconsin native started a COVID-19 relief fund through the Know Your Rights Camp and included a personal donation of $100,000.

Protests have taken place in Minneapolis over the last four days in response to Floyd's death.