The jury has reached a verdict at the murder trial of former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd. The jury found Chauvin guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree unintentional murder and of second-degree manslaughter.
Floyd died last May after Chauvin, a white officer, pinned his knee on the 46-year-old Black man’s neck for about 9 1/2 minutes in a case that triggered worldwide protests, violence and a reexamination of racism and policing in the U.S.
The jury deliberated over parts of two days, as the nation-on-edge waited.
The defense contended that Chauvin, who has since been fired, acted reasonably and that a heart condition and illegal drug use led to Floyd’s death. President Joe Biden has repeatedly denounced Floyd’s death but stopped short of commenting on the trial itself.
The jury of six white people and six people who are Black or multiracial spent just a few hours on their task Monday after the day was mostly consumed by closing arguments. Chauvin, 45, is charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter The most serious charge carries up to 40 years in prison.
For all three charges, prosecutors had to prove that Chauvin caused Floyd’s death and that his use of force was unreasonable. Prosecutors didn’t have to prove Chauvin’s restraint was the sole cause of Floyd’s death, but only that his conduct was a “substantial causal factor.” Chauvin was authorized to use force as a police officer, as long as that force was considered reasonable.
The City of Minneapolis agreed to a $27 million settlement with Floyd family. Chauvin’s sentencing will be delivered in the next eight weeks.
Indivisible Nob Hill will be holding a rally at South Johnson Field at 6:30pm tonight.
This is a developing story. Check back for local reactions and updates….
From outside the courthouse in Minneapolis as the verdict was announced.
Interior Secretary and former New Mexico Congresswoman Deb Haaland
Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina