Before becoming a police officer, Kueng briefly stocked shelves at a Target. He went to Monroe College in New Rochelle, New York, United States to play soccer and study business but he quit after having surgery on both knees.
On May 25, 2020, an employee at Cup Foods on Chicago Avenue in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA called the Minneapolis Police Department to report a customer who was trying to pay with a counterfeit $20 bill. Apparently, Floyd matched the suspect’s descriptions so he was arrested by Chauvin, Thao, Lane and Kueng.
It was Kueng and Lane who arrived first during the arrest of Floyd while Chauvin and Thao followed minutes later in a separate squad car. Kueng was the one holding Floyd’s back while Chauvin was kneeling on the arrestee’s neck.
Several bystanders witnessed the deadly encounter, which was streamed live on Facebook. As shown in the video, Floyd was lying face down on the street next to the squad car’s rear passenger wheel while repeatedly telling the cops he could not breathe.
Chauvin put his left knee on Floyd’s neck for a total of 9 minutes and 29 seconds. Two minutes and 53 seconds of this was after the arrestee was non-responsive.
While Chauvin was kneeling on Floyd’s neck, Kueng and Lane were holding the arrestee. On the other hand, Thao was dealing with the eyewitnesses.
“I couldn’t find one,” Kueng told his colleagues after checking Floyd’s pulse when the arrestee started to lose consciousness. Paramedics arrived and took the unconscious arrestee to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis where he was pronounced dead.
On May 26, 2020, the Minneapolis Police Department terminated Chauvin, Thao, Lane and Kueng. Kueng’s file indicated that he was fired for substandard performance, misconduct and violations of the city’s use-of-force policy, including failure to stop another officer from applying inappropriate force.
Prior to this, Kueng had no disciplinary records as a Minneapolis Police Department officer. Here are 13 facts about the former rookie cop:
- He speaks, reads and writes Russian.
- He had a girlfriend who is of Hmong descent.
- His father John Dennis Kueng, a certified registered nurse anesthetic, is Nigerian while his mother Joni L. Kueng, a math teacher, is white. He has four adoptive siblings namely Jordan Kueng, Taylor Kueng, Radiance Kueng and Matthew Kueng. Radiance and Taylor were both born in 1999 and the latter identify as non-binary.
- He is 5’11” tall.
- In 2012, he graduated from Patrick Henry High School in Minneapolis. He was the captain of the soccer team when he was in high school and he played for the Cruz Azul Minnesota soccer soccer club.
- From 2014 to 2017, he worked as an asset protection detective at Macy’s in downtown Minneapolis.
- In 2017, he became a community service officer.
- In 2018, he graduated from the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota with a bachelor’s degree in sociology of law and criminology. While studying in the university, he worked a security monitor, escorting students to and from different locations around campus.
- In February 2019, he joined the Minneapolis Police Department as a cadet.
- In August 2019, he was licensed as a police officer.
- In December 2019, he was hired as a police officer.
- He was 27 years old when he was involved in Floyd’s fatal arrest on May 25, 2020.
- On February 24, 2022, 12 jurors found him, Lane and Thao guilty of depriving Floyd of his civil rights by showing deliberate indifference to Floyd’s medical needs as Chauvin knelt on Floyd on May 25, 2020. He and Thao were also found guilty of failing to intervene to stop Chauvin. He was represented by Thomas C. Plunkett.