New top story from Time: These Mothers Who Lost Sons to Police Violence Tell Protesters to ‘Keep Up the Fight’

George Floyd’s death brought Wanda Johnson back to a dark place.

She was scrolling through Facebook when she came across the footage, now seen around the world, of a white Minneapolis police officer digging his knee into Floyd’s neck on May 25 as the 46-year-old black man begged for his life and gasped for air for nearly nine minutes.

When Floyd used one of his last breaths to call out for his mother, Johnson wept.

It took her back to the Oakland train platform where her own son, 22-year-old Oscar Grant, was killed by police 11 years ago. Grant, who was lying face-down when he was fatally shot in the back, screamed that he had a 4-year-old daughter. It was one of the first incidents of deadly police force to be captured on video by bystanders, and it set off days of protest.

US-POLICE-VIOLENCE-MOTHERS
Jim Watson/AFP—Getty ImagesWanda Johnson (center), whose son Oscar Grant was fatally shot in 2009 by a police officer in Oakland, California, stands with others during a vigil in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 10, 2014.

“It’s still so emotional for me,” Johnson says of Floyd’s killing, which she watched three times. “It reminded me of my son telling the officer he had a daughter, telling the officer that he just wanted to go home—just never to come home again.”

“It opens up wounds in me,” she adds. “The most painful part is seeing it continue to happen.”

If her son were alive today, Johnson says he would be among the tens of thousands of protesters fanning out in dozens of cities across the nation, demanding justice for Floyd and countless other black men and women killed by law enforcement officers.

“He would say to continue to protest,” Johnson says. “Keep the light on George Floyd.”

Protsting the death of George Floyd in Los Angeles
Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times—Getty ImagesDemonstrators protest in downtown Los Angeles on June 2, 2020

So would Eric Garner, according to his mother Gwen Carr. “I think that he would give them a thumbs-up,” Carr says, “because this is what we need to do to get awareness in America.”

Garner, a 43-year-old father of six, died after Daniel Pantaleo, a white New York City police officer, held him in a chokehold during an attempted arrest in Staten Island, N.Y. on July 17, 2014. Before he died, Garner repeated the words that have become a rally crying for protesters—”I can’t breathe”—11 times. Floyd uttered the same phrase repeatedly as he lay pinned to the ground.

“It was deja vu,” Carr, 70, says of the similarities between the men’s deaths.

“It seemed like they were murdering my son all over again,” says Carr, who can’t bring herself to watch the video of Floyd.

Despite national outrage that erupted after Garner’s death, a grand jury and federal prosecutors declined to bring charges against Pantaleo. He was fired from the force in August 2019, more than five years after Garner’s death.

In Minneapolis, Derek Chauvin, the police officer who kneeled on Floyd, was arrested and charged on May 29 with third-degree murder and manslaughter. On Wednesday, prosecutors announced that the murder charge has been elevated to second-degree, and that the three other officers who were on the scene have been charged with aiding and abetting a murder. All four officers have been fired.

Two days after Floyd’s death, Carr contacted his family to give them her sympathies and some advice. “I told them I knew exactly what they were going through and for them to keep up the fight,” she tells TIME. “It’s going to be a long fight.”

Family Members Of Victims Killed By Police Urge Cuomo To Keep Commitment On Special Prosecutor
Spencer Platt—Getty ImagesGwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner, on July 7, 2015 in New York City.

Carr is trying to remain hopeful that Floyd’s family will see justice served in a way she did not. But few instances of civilian deaths at police hands, either accidental or intentional, have ended with cops facing trial.

Law enforcement officers in the U.S. intentionally or accidentally killed more than 7,600 civilians between 2013 and 2019, according to Mapping Police Violence, one of the few groups that tracks deadly police encounters in the absence of a comprehensive national database. Among deaths reported by Mapping Police Violence, an officer was charged with a crime in 1.3% of the cases.

But new research shows there are signs of progress—thanks to activists, experts say.

In 2019, police in 30 of the nation’s largest cities killed 30% fewer people than in 2013, according to Samuel Sinyangwe, a policy analyst who co-founded Mapping Police Violence, an on-line non-profit site, which compiles data from news articles, police reports, social media and other sources.

Sinyangwe says that’s likely due to pressures brought on by protesters, who helped lead many cities to change use-of-force policies to match recommendations from the Justice Department. He says police shootings fell last year in Philadelphia, San Francisco, Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Phoenix and Dallas after reforms were implemented.

While there’s a feeling across the nation that nothing has changed when it comes to police brutality, Sinyangwe says there’s hope if activists keep the movement’s momentum going and continue pressuring policymakers and leaders.

“Their work is saving lives. Their work is making a difference in not only bringing attention to this issue but leading to concrete changes,” he says. “That’s really important for people to know in this moment.”

National March on Washington for Justice
Evelyn Hockstein/Washington Post—Getty ImagesSamaria Rice (left), the mother of Tamir Rice, and Leslie McSpadden (right), the mother of Michael Brown, listen to Al Sharpton, at a march in Washington, D.C., on December 13, 2014.

Still, improvements have been slow. While police killings dropped in big cities, they increased in more suburban and rural areas, Sinyangwe says, and the number of people killed by police has remained relatively steady nationwide since 2013.

There are also larger hurdles on the federal level. In the last few years, President Donald Trump’s administration has rolled back several police reforms implemented by President Barack Obama’s administration, making it harder to intervene with problematic police forces. During recent news conferences, Trump called himself the “president of law and order” and threatened military action and violence if rioting and looting continued in cities.

Meanwhile, parents like Samaria Rice, whose 12-year-old son Tamir was killed by Cleveland police in 2014, are numb as they wait for the day they don’t have to turn on the TV and see another senseless death.

“Every time I see it, it destroys me,” Rice says.

On June 25, Tamir would have turned 18. Rice is making plans to celebrate the bittersweet milestone, as unrest roils the nation.

“The hardest thing for me is I can’t see my son develop as a young man,” Rice says. “It’s painful for me to see nothing has changed in this country. Nothing.”

New top story from Time: Snapchat Says It Will Stop ‘Promoting’ President Trump

(OAKLAND, Calif.) — Snapchat will stop “promoting” President Donald Trump on its video messaging service, the latest example of a social media platform adjusting how it treats this U.S. president.

Last week, Twitter placed fact-check warnings on two Trump tweets that called mail-in ballots “fraudulent” and predicted problems with the November elections. It demoted and placed a stronger warning on a third tweet about Minneapolis protests that read, in part, that “when the looting starts the shooting starts.”

Snapchat’s action is more limited. It means only that the president’s posts will no longer show up in the app’s “Discover” section, which showcases news and posts by celebrities and public figures. Trump’s account will remain active on Snapchat and visible to anyone who searches for or follows it.

The decision, which Snap — the owner of Snapchat — says was made over the weekend, puts the Santa Monica, California-based company in Twitter’s camp after that company escalated its actions against Trump.

Facebook, meanwhile, has let identical posts stand, although the company and CEO Mark Zuckerberg face growing criticism over the decision.

“We will not amplify voices who incite racial violence and injustice by giving them free promotion on Discover,” Snap said in a statement Wednesday. “Racial violence and injustice have no place in our society and we stand together with all who seek peace, love, equality, and justice in America.”

Snapchat has 229 million daily active users. Twitter, by comparison, has 166 million. Unlike Twitter and even Facebook, Snapchat is generally used as a private communications tool, with friends sending each other short videos and images and, to a lesser extent, following celebrities and other accounts.

In a tweet, Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said Snap CEO Evan Spiegel “would rather promote extreme left riot videos & encourage users to destroy America than share positive words of unity, justice, and law & order from our President.”

New top story from Time: Hundreds of Protesters Being Held Illegally in New York City Jails, Lawsuit Against NYPD Alleges

Hundreds of people are being detained illegally in New York City in violation of their right to an arrangement within 24 hours of their arrest, the Legal Aid Society alleges in a lawsuit filed against the New York Police Department (NYPD) Tuesday night, which demands the detainees’ immediate release.

When the suit was first filed it alleged that at least 108 people were being illegally detained in Manhattan. As of Wednesday morning that number has now risen to at least 295, the Legal Aid Society tells TIME. Legal Aid claims that many people have been held since Saturday.

For the past week thousands of New Yorkers — and hundreds of thousands around the world — have taken to the streets to protest police brutality and demand justice for the murder of George Floyd, a black man who was killed during an arrest in Minneapolis on May 25. While the majority of protests have been peaceful, some demonstrations have grown violent, as the NYPD on multiple occasions has turned tear gas and rubber bullets on crowds. Some protesters have allegedly engaged in arson and looting.

Read more:‘I Couldn’t Just Sit and Watch.’ Photographing New York City’s George Floyd Protests

At least 1,500 people have been arrested in New York since Floyd’s murder, according to the Associated Press. At least 700 people were arrested by the NYPD on Monday and as of Tuesday night around 400 people in Manhattan were awaiting arraignment, according to The City. In an attempt to contain the unrest, New York City officials implemented the city’s first curfew in 75 years on Monday — it is set to run from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. ET through the week.

The 1991 case Roundtree v. Brown set the standard that an individual arrested in New York must be arraigned — the formal reading of charges with the opportunity to enter a plea — within 24 hours of their arrest. Legal Aid tells TIME that, as of Wednesday morning, 400 people were being detained illegally due to their lack of arraignment throughout all of New York City: 295 people in Manhattan, 77 in the Bronx, 26 in Brooklyn and one in Queens. The suit filed on Tuesday night is specifically on behalf of those detained in Manhattan.

The suit comes amid increasing concern around the safety of New York City jails during the coronavirus pandemic. For months New York was the epicenter of COVID-19 in the U.S. and, as of Wednesday, at least 16,933 people have died from coronavirus in New York City alone, according to the New York City Department of Health.

The spread of COVID-19 is particularly difficult to contain in detention facilities because of crowding and the potential introductions of the virus by new intakes, the CDC found in May report. According to The Legal Aid Society, as of May 27 at least 348 people currently in Department of Correction (DOC) custody in New York City have had confirmed cases of COVID-19. New York City correction officers have also been hit particularly hard by the pandemic; as of May 20, at least 1,259 officers had been infected and six had died, per the New York Times.

Savannah, 24, tells TIME that she was detained in Manhattan for over eight hours after being arrested while protesting on Monday night, before being charged with unlawful assembly and released with a court summons. (TIME is withholding her full name as her court case remains pending.) She said that she was transported to a detention center in a van with eight other people “all very close together with our masks down so we were worried about contracting [coronavirus].”

Many NYPD officers were also working without masks on properly, Savannah adds.

While the women she was transported with were put in holding cells that only allowed two people at a time, she claims the men were put in a large holding cell all together. She alleges that some officers “kept asking if we were antifa and [that we should] call George Soros to bail us out.”

In a statement, the NYPD tells TIME it will “decline comment on pending litigation,” but did not immediately address Savannah’s claims.

The New York Unified Court System did not respond to TIME’s request for comment, but in an interview with The City on Tuesday, a spokesperson for the New York Courts said that the delay in arraignments is in part because the NYPD has not swiftly filed information for criminal complaints. “To docket the case and arraign someone, the court needs the arrest paperwork to be processed, which the Police Department is doing glacially,” Lucian Chalfen, a courts spokesperson, told The City.

“This flagrant violation of law by the New York City Police Department appears to be designed to retaliate against New Yorkers protesting police brutality,” Tina Luongo, attorney-in-charge of Legal Aid’s Criminal Defense Practice, said in a statement on Tuesday.

Luongo argued that under New York’s recent pretrial reforms — which removed bail requirements for many misdemeanors and non-violent crimes — most detainees should be released on their own recognizance once they’re arraigned. “Instead, these New Yorkers are now being held illegally, deprived of due process and needlessly subjected to increased risk of contracting COVID-19, endangering each of them as well as the entire community,” she continued.

The Legal Aid Society says the NYPD’s actions are similar to the mass arrests that took place in 2004 during protests of the Republican National Convention. The Society filed a similar suit against the NYPD at that time — arguing that protesters were being held illegally against their right to the 24-hour window for arraignment — and won.

New top story from Time: After Global Outcry, 3 Ex-Minneapolis Police Officers Are Charged With Aiding and Abetting George Floyd’s Murder

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison on Wednesday announced the state is bringing charges against the three additional ex-Minneapolis police officers who were on scene during George Floyd’s death. He also announced that the most serious criminal charge against the ex-police officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes has been elevated.

Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas K. Lane—the three former Minneapolis police officers who stood by as Floyd died—were charged with aiding and abetting murder in the second degree. The trio were fired shortly after the May 25 incident captured on video, but until now have not faced criminal charges, which come after more than a week of tense nationwide protests against institutional racism and police brutality, which called for their arrest and justice for 46-year-old Floyd.

Derek Chauvin now faces an upgraded second-degree murder charge, Ellison confirmed Wednesday. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman initially charged him with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, and Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has since asked Ellison to lead the prosecution.

Wednesday’s news was a “bittersweet moment” for Floyd’s family, according to a tweet from their attorney, Benjamin Crump.

Floyd’s family demanded the arrest of all four police officers in connection to his death earlier Wednesday while they visited a memorial created on the street corner where Floyd was killed, the Associated Press reported.

Crump’s tweet on Wednesday afternoon noted that the family was “deeply gratified” about Ellison’s “decisive action.”

Floyd’s family had previously said they were not happy with Chauvin facing third-degree murder charges and asked that he instead be charged with first-degree murder.

The Legal Rights Center and the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota also issued a statement over the weekend arguing that third-degree murder charges were not enough as they “may prove to be legally defective and allow Chauvin to evade the punishment warranted for his actions.”

Floyd was killed during an arrest over allegedly using a fraudulent $20 bill at a grocery store. Video footage shows Floyd was held face-down, with his hands cuffed behind his back and with Chauvin’s knee weighing down on his neck, as he repeatedly gasped “I can’t breathe.” In the video, Thao can also be seen watching the incident and not responding to bystanders’ concerns that Floyd was in danger.

Thao and Chauvin both have a history of complaints made against them while working for law enforcement. (Chauvin racked up more than 15 conduct complaints in his 19 years with the police agency, while Thao had six conduct complaints filed against him, according to the Minnesota Star-Tribune.)

Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said Sunday that he believes “silence and inaction” from the other three ex-officers made them “complicit” in Floyd’s death.

Arradondo was responding to a question from the Floyd family, relayed Sunday through a CNN correspondent. Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, asked about the police chief’s thoughts on whether all four former officers should be arrested and convicted.

“Being silent or not intervening— to me, you’re complicit,” Arradondo said. “My decision to fire all four officers was not based on some sort of hierarchy.” He added, “I don’t see a difference in terms of the ultimate outcome as he is not here with us.”

Arradondo said he expected his officers to hold themselves to a higher standard. “If there were one solitary voice that would have intervened and acted —that’s what I would have hoped for.”

The attorney representing the Floyd family said Monday that the results of an independent autopsy “determined that asphyxiation from sustained pressure was the cause of death.” The manner of death was “homicide caused by asphyxia due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain,” the statement said, adding that doctors concluded from evidence that Floyd died at the scene.

An official preliminary autopsy report showed that there were “no physical findings that support a diagnosis of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation,” according to prosecutors. The report instead blamed a variety of factors, saying the “combined effect of Floyd being restrained by the police, his underlying health conditions, and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death.”

Prosecutors contend in the official criminal complaint, released last Friday, that after officers arrived on the scene they learned Floyd was parked in a car around the corner from the store that called the police over a counterfeit bill.

Police officers Kueng and Lane approached the car, documents say. Lane “began speaking with Mr. Floyd,” “he pulled his gun out and pointed it at Mr. Floyd’s open window and directed Mr. Floyd to show his hands,” after which he “put his gun back in its holster.” Then, Lane allegedly ordered Floyd out of the car and pulled him out of the vehicle, before handcuffing him despite Floyd’s resistance.

Lane explained to Floyd that he was being arrested for “passing counterfeit currency” and as the duo tried to walk him to their squad car, Floyd “stiffened up, fell to the ground and told the officers he was claustrophobic.”

Then, Chauvin and Thoa arrived in another police car.

Together, the officers struggled as they “made several attempts” to get Floyd in the backseat of the police car. Floyd began repeating that he could not breathe. Chauvin allegedly tried to get Floyd into the car from the passenger side as “Lane and Kueng assisted.”

Then, Chauvin pulled Floyd out of the passenger side of the squad car and Floyd “went to the ground face down and still handcuffed.” That’s when Chauvin knelt on him. “None of the three officers moved from their positions,” even as Floyd repeatedly said “I can’t breathe.”

The criminal complaint notes that “police are trained” to know this “type of restraint with a subject in a prone position is inherently dangerous.”

New top story from Time: I Spent My Career in the U.S. Navy. The U.S. Military Must Stand up for Its Soul in This Moment

It is long past time to address inequality in this nation and issues like harsh, often brutal, treatment of minorities by police – especially against African-Americans. The peaceful demonstrations that erupted after the murder of George Floyd are completely understandable although the violence and destruction that accompanied some of them is not.

Clearly, we need to stop looters, restore order to our streets, and ensure it is safe to venture out in public. But as a former member of the armed forces, it hurt to watch U.S. military personnel used against peaceful protestors in Washington D.C. early this week. The sweeping use of a combined civil-military force – D.C. police, Park Police, National Guard, and active duty military police – against the protesters to clear the way for a Presidential photo-op was beyond the pale of American norms. It was particularly ill-advised to include active duty military personnel in that event.

Our military numbers about 1.2 million active duty. They are sworn to protect and defend the constitution of the United States, and the vast majority would instantly lay down their lives to do so. But they are not meant to be turned against their fellow citizens. Our founding fathers feared the use of a standing army that could be used to further the aims of a dictator. Fresh in their minds was the repeated use of the British army directly against what were then British subjects in Boston and elsewhere in the colonies. Here in these United States, we built laws, customs, and traditions that focus on the appropriate use of the military outside the country. The idea of “boots on the ground” and “dominating the battlespace” in our American cities is anathema to America.

We have over a million police officers in the United States. The National Guard, which is appropriately prepared for these kinds of civil order missions, is a capable and ready force available to governors to supplement the police if needed. That is more than sufficient to control any foreseeable version of events going forward. We need to get our active duty military out of the line of fire of domestic politics and off the streets, and turn this mission over to the men and women trained for it.

I am old enough to remember the protests of 1968, the destructive energy that ripped through this nation in those days under the twin burdens of racism (and the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.) and the country’s enormous protests against the war in Vietnam. Our military became part of the politics of the time, and as a result was disrespected in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It has taken decades to rebuild the nation’s trust in our military, and to find our way to a time in which the military is the most trusted institution in the nation and the expression “thank you for your service” is regularly heard by every man and woman in uniform.

All of that is at risk. Our active duty military must remain above the fray of domestic politics, and the best way to do that is to keep that force focused on its rightful mission outside the United States. Our senior active duty military leaders must make that case forcefully and directly to national leadership, speaking truth to power in uncomfortable ways. They must do this at the risk of their career. I hope they will do so, and not allow the military to be dragged into the maelstrom that is ahead of us, and which will likely only accelerate between now and November. If they do not stand and deliver on this vital core value, I fear for the soul of our military and all of the attendant consequences. We cannot afford to have a future Lafayette Square end up looking like Tiananmen Square.

 

New top story from Time: Thousands in London Chant ‘Black Lives Matter’ While Joining Worldwide George Floyd Protests

(LONDON) — Thousands of people demonstrated in London on Wednesday against police violence and racial injustice following the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, which has set off days of unrest in the United States.

Chanting “Black lives matter,” thousands gathered in Hyde Park, central London’s biggest open space and a traditional protest venue. Many of them passed through barriers at the park and marched through the streets, blocking traffic. There were no signs of violence, although some sprayed graffiti on walls.

Some protesters converged on Parliament and the nearby office of Prime Minister Boris Johnson at 10 Downing St. Others headed south of the River Thames.

“Star Wars” actor John Boyega, who was born in Britain to Nigerian parents and grew up in south London’s Peckham neighborhood, pleaded tearfully for demonstrators to stay peaceful.

“Because they want us to mess up, they want us to be disorganized, but not today,” he said.

Boyega recalled the case of Stephen Lawrence, an 18-year-old black man from southeast London who was stabbed to death in 1993 as he waited for a bus. The case against his attackers collapsed in 1996, and a government report cited institutional racism on the part of the London police force as a key factor in its failure to thoroughly investigate the killing.

“Black lives have always mattered,” Boyega said. “We have always been important. We have always meant something. We have always succeeded regardless and now is the time. I ain’t waiting.”

Police appeared to keep a low profile during the demonstration and the ensuing marches.

Earlier, the U.K.’s most senior police officer said she was “appalled” by Floyd’s death and “horrified” by the subsequent violence in U.S. cities. Floyd died May 25 after a white Minneapolis officer, Derek Chauvin, pressed his knee on the handcuffed black man’s neck for several minutes.

“I do want to reassure people in London … that we will continue with our tradition of policing, using minimum force necessary, working as closely as we possibly can with our communities,” Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick told the London Assembly police and crime committee.

“Met officers and staff are highly professional, they’re very well trained, they’re very restrained and they’re also very, very highly scrutinized, something we don’t flinch from at all,” Dick said.

While the London protesters expressed solidarity with Americans protesting Floyd’s death, many also pointed to issues closer to home. “Racism is a pandemic,” said one placard at the London demonstration.

Other protests are taking place around the world, including in Cape Town, South Africa, and in Reykjavík, Iceland.

In Cape Town, about 20 people gathered at the gates of the parliament complex and held up signs with the slogans of “Black Lives Matter” and “Justice 4 George Floyd and Collins Khosa.”

Khosa is died a month ago after being confronted by soldiers and police in Johannesburg’s Alexandra township. Family members say he died hours after he was choked and beaten.

A South African army investigation cleared the soldiers of wrongdoing, but lawyers for Khosa’s family say they will challenge those findings.

The London demonstrators appeared to ignore coronavirus social distancing guidelines in the U.K., where people have been told to stay 2 meters (6 feet) apart.

Some of them carried placards saying “Justice for Belly Mujinga,” a 47-year-old railway station worker who died of coronavirus in April, weeks after an incident in which she said she was coughed and spat upon by a customer who claimed to be infected.

Her death has come to symbolize the high toll the virus has taken on ethnic minority Britons and front-line workers — and, for some, social injustice. Police did not bring charges against the man accused of confronting Mujinga, saying an investigation had shown he did not infect her and there was no evidence to substantiate a criminal offense.

The coronavirus outbreak has exposed divisions and inequalities within the U.K. A government-commissioned report Tuesday confirmed that ethnic minorities in Britain experienced a higher death rate from the coronavirus than whites.

Figures from London’s Metropolitan Police also show that black and ethnic minority Londoners were more likely than their white counterparts to be fined or arrested for breaking lockdown rules barring gatherings or nonessential travel.

Metropolitan Police figures show that black people received 26% of the 973 fines handed out by police between March 27 and May 14, and accounted for 31% of arrests. They make up about 12% of London’s population. People from Asian, black, mixed and other backgrounds received more than half of the fines and arrests, but account for about 40% of the city’s population.

The police force said the reasons for the discrepancy were “complex.” But Owen West, a former police chief superintendent, said racism was a potential factor.

“The U.K. police service has massive issues with discrimination … and I really do think now is the time to confront it,” he told the BBC.

New top story from Time: Glee Actress Lea Michele Offers Apology After Former Co-Star Samantha Marie Ware Accuses Her of ‘Traumatic Microaggressions’

(NEW YORK) — Former Glee star Lea Michele has apologized for being “unnecessarily difficult” on the set of the musical TV show after a co-star accused Michele of making her time there “a living hell.”

Michele issued a statement saying that while she didn’t recall any incident or judged anyone by their background, she was sorry and blamed her privilege and “immaturity.”

Read more: Black and Brown People Have Been Protesting for Centuries. It’s White People Who Are Responsible for What Happens Next.

“I clearly acted in ways which hurt other people. Whether it was my privileged position and perspective that caused me to be perceived as insensitive or inappropriate at times or whether it was just my immaturity and me just being unnecessarily difficult, I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused,” she said.

The apology came two days after former co-star Samantha Marie Ware accused Michele of “traumatic microaggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood.”

Michele had tweeted a comment on the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after a white officer pressed his knee into in his neck while he pleaded for air in Minnesota. She tweeted her support of Black Lives Matter movement and said police violence on black people must end.

Ware responded by tweeting in all caps that Michele had made her first TV job a “living hell.”

Michele is white and Ware is black.

After the Ware’s allegation, the meal kit company HelloFresh announced that it would sever its partnership with Michele, saying “We are disheartened and disappointed to learn of the recent claims concerning Lea Michele.”

In her statement, Michele noted that she is soon to be a mother and tried to strike a hopeful note.

“I listened to these criticisms and I am learning and while I am very sorry, I will be better in the future from this experience,” she wrote. “We all can grow and change and I have definitely used these past several months to reflect my own shortcomings.”