Man charged with assault at Minnesota State Fair blames PTSD from witnessing George Floyd's killing

A man who witnessed the killing of George Floyd blamed post-traumatic stress from that disturbing incident while explaining why he fought officers during an arrest outside the Minnesota State Fair last weekend.

According to the complaint, officers responded around 5:15 p.m. on Saturday for a reported domestic assault. The victim of that attack told police she had been arguing with her ex-boyfriend and apparent business partner, identified as 34-year-old Donald Williams, over text message while at the fair over buying ice. The woman, who was selling water bottles at the fair with her kids, said she refused because she didn't want to leave her children alone.

But, as they were leaving the fair, she says Williams was parked in his car near where she was parked at Midway Parkway and Asbury Street North.

The victim said she got into her vehicle while Williams approached her driver's side window. She told police that Williams strangled her while striking her backhanded with his right hand. Williams stopped when another woman walked up and yelled at him, according to the charges.

When police arrived, the victim had bruises, a scratch mark, and was having trouble swallowing. She told officers she couldn't breathe as Williams was strangling her, the charges detail.

Police say they found Williams a short distance away with his daughter. Officers say when they tried to arrest him, he became hostile and fought with officers. However, when officers pulled out a Taser, they say he calmed down and started complying with orders. But when they tried to put him in the squad car, he started to shout, threatening to kill the officers while also making comments about their families.

Later speaking with police, the charges state that Williams admitted to confronting his ex-girlfriend but denied harming her physically. When asked why he struggled with police, Williams said he was worried about his daughter being left by herself. He also said he was angry about the arrest, adding he suffers from PTSD from witnessing the killing of George Floyd.

Williams is charged with two counts of domestic assault. He also has two pending previous cases, police say, on charges of obstructing legal processes and disorderly conduct in two separate cases.