Derek Chauvin Sentenced to 21 Years for George Floyd Murder

The footage showing Derek Chauvin kneeling on the restrained Floyd's neck for over eight minutes while the officers were making the arrest sparked worldwide anger and the greatest popular uprising witnessed in the United States in decades.

Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 21 years in federal prison for murdering George Floyd. 

Judge Paul Magnuson told Chauvin during the civil rights violation sentencing “put your knee on another person’s neck until they’re deceased is wrong. And for that, you must be substantially punished.” 

Chauvin has been held for the past 15 months in a state prison, where he has been kept in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day. Now he will be moved to federal prison. 

Prosecutors and Floyd’s family sought the maximum sentencing of 25 years, saying that Chauvin’s actions were needless and coldblooded. The defense asked for 20 years.  

In May 2020, Chauvin pinned Floyd down to the ground with his knee on his neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds, killing Floyd in the street. Floyd was accused of passing a counterfeit $20 bill at a convenience store. 

Floyd’s murder sparked protests across the United States. It brought a reckoning over police brutality and racism in America. 

Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter at a trial in April 2021. He was sentenced to 22.5 years in state prison. 

Chauvin was not alone when he pinned Floyd down. Three other now-former police officers were with him. Tou Thao, J. Alexander Keung, and Thomas Lane were convicted in February of federal civil rights charges in Floyd’s killing. Their sentencing dates have not yet been set. 

Chauvin entered a federal guilty plea. When he did, he for the first time admitted that he held his knee down on Floyd’s neck, even as he pleaded “I can’t breathe,” and then became unresponsive. 

Chauvin admitted he willfully deprived Floyd of his right to be free from unreasonable seizure, including unreasonable force by a police officer. 

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.