Two Years After The Death Of George Floyd, Here Are The Developments In His Case

On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, 46, was murdered in Minneapolis by 44-year-old police officer Derek Chauvin. Three other police officers were implicated in Floyd’s death.

May 25, 2022
George Floyd

George Floyd

On May 25, 2020, 46-year-old George Floyd was murdered in Minneapolis by 44-year-old Derek Chauvin. Three other police officers were implicated in Floyd’s death. The cruel and gruesome circumstances of his murder were caught on video by bystanders, and that brought international attention on the case. After public outcries for justice, eventually the four were charged in his death.

Derek Chauvin

In June 2021, Derek Chauvin was found guilty of on all charges against him, which included second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter, according to CNN.

Chauvin also faced federal civil rights charges against him. NPR reported, “Such federal charges are rare, in part because it is difficult to meet the high legal bar they require. To succeed, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Chauvin acted ‘willfully’ to deprive Floyd of his civil rights and used force that was ‘constitutionally unreasonable.’”

In May of 2022, U.S. District Court Judge Paul Magnuson accepted Chauvin’s plea deal and will sentence him to 20 to 25 years in prison. CNN reported that, "assuming all good-time credit,” Chauvin will actually be expected to serve “between 17 and a little over 21 years”. Without the plea agreement, his maximum sentence would have been life in prison.

Three other police officers facing charges

Three other officers are facing state and federal charges in the death of George Floyd. As Derek Chauvin kept a knee on Floyd’s neck for nine and a half minutes, Thomas Lane held his legs, J. Alexander Kueng knelt on his back, and Tou Thao kept bystanders from intervening and saving Floyd’s life.

In the federal civil rights trial of Kueng, Lane, and Thao, they were found guilty of all charges against them after about two days of deliberations, but they remained free on bond until their sentencing hearing.

The state trial for Thao and Kueng has been delayed until January 2023. They are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter. Lane pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter last month as part of a plea deal and is scheduled to be sentenced on September 21, 2022.

"No police officer is above the law, nor should they ever be shielded from accountability," NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson said. He called the federal charges a step in the right direction, according to NPR, but he also stated that “urgent reforms” are needed.

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