- George Floyd’s family members say they’re getting online hate after Kanye West made comments about him on a podcast.
- West – who now goes by Ye – falsely said that Minnesota cop Derek Chauvin wasn’t responsible for murdering Floyd.
- The family is planning to sue Ye for “negligence, infliction of emotional distress” and “misappropriation of Floyd’s image and likeness.”
Lawyers representing George Floyd’s family said the family has been getting online hate since Ye – formally known as Kanye West – made comments about Floyd’s death on a “Drink Champs” podcast episode.
“They are receiving hateful comments on the internet about his death again so they’re reliving this horrific incident over and over again,” Pat Dixon, Founder of and Partner at Dixon & Dixon Attorneys at Law, told Insider.
In a since-deleted podcast interview on “Drink Champs,” Ye falsely said that Floyd’s died of fentanyl, even though his death was officially ruled asphyxiation, and said that Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin’s knee wasn’t really on Floyd’s neck.
Chauvin was arrested and convicted of murdering Floyd during the arrest, which sparked international protests and condemnation.
Kay Harper Williams, a Partner at Witherspoon Law Group, called the comments “false and vile.”
In response, Roxie Washington, the mother of Floyd’s 8-year-old-daughter, Gianna, is gearing up to sue Ye for “negligence, infliction of emotional distress, and any other charges that will develop as we comb through the evidence that is available, “Williams said.
Dixon added they will also seek charges over “misappropriation of Floyd’s image and likeness.”
Williams said the team is currently evaluating whether to add any other defendants to the suit, such as Candace Owens, who – in a documentary about the Black Lives Matter movement sparked by Floyd’s death – made similar comments.
“All chips are on the table,” Williams told Insider.
The team announced the pending lawsuit Tuesday, noting they are seeking $ 250 million from Ye in compensatory damages. Williams said she hopes a jury would also award the family punitive damages.
Williams said they expect to file litigation in the coming weeks.
As for the family, Washington was “very, very upset at the comments” Ye made, Dixon said, adding that the family is “emboldened right now because they know they have another fight on their hands and they are going to continue to fight to preserve George’s legacy. ”
The legal team said they also want to protect Gianna Floyd from the online hate about her father since she is almost old enough to search the internet herself, Dixon said.
“People can’t go on TV or go on the internet, whoever it is, and make up lies about her father,” Dixon said.
“We’re here to protect an eight-year-old little girl who lost her father in a horrific way,” Williams said of their intent for this lawsuit. “As Gianna said, her daddy changed the world and we’re not going to allow anybody to tarnish that legacy.”