Derek Chauvin Found Guilty on all Charges

Jack O, News Editor

   On April 20, former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of all three charges levied against him after kneeling on the neck of George Floyd for more than nine minutes in one of the most infamous trials of the Black Lives Matter era.

   According to The New York Times, the verdict comes roughly 11 months after Floyd’s death on May 25, 2020. Following a 911 call made by a convenience store employee, Floyd was pinned to the ground by three officers. Chauvin kneeled on Floyd’s neck for several minutes despite pleas from witnesses and Floyd himself ( 

   Video evidence shows officers taking a series of actions that violate the policies of the Minneapolis Police Department. The day after Floyd’s death, the Police Department fired all four officers who were involved (

   According to CNN, “Derek Chauvin, 45, was convicted of second degree unintentional murder, third degree murder and second degree manslaughter. The jurors deliberated for more than 10 hours over two days before coming to their decision.”

   “The second degree murder charge said Chauvin assaulted Floyd with his knee, which unintentionally caused Floyd’s death. The third degree murder charge said Chauvin acted with a ‘depraved mind,’ and the manslaughter charge said his ‘culpable negligence’ caused Floyd’s death,” according to CNN (

   Chauvin could face up to 40 years in prison for second degree murder, up to 25 years for third degree murder and up to 10 years for manslaughter. Minnesota’s sentencing guidelines recommend about 12.5 years in prison for each murder charge and about four years for the manslaughter charge. In this case, the state has asked for a tougher sentence than the recommendations provide. Chauvin’s sentencing is set for June 16 (

   According to National Public Radio, “After the video of Floyd’s death went viral last May, many sought to distance themselves from Chauvin, characterizing him as one of the so called ‘bad apples’ that spoil the reputation of officers who try to do things the right way” ( 

   “In a striking repudiation of Chauvin’s actions, ten of his former colleagues at the Minneapolis Police Department testified against him during the trial, including police chief and star witness Medaria Arradondo, who said Chauvin’s restraint of Floyd ‘in no way, shape or form is anything that is by policy’” (

   According to The Washington Post, although the evidence and testimony against Chauvin seemed devastating to some observers, legal analysts and policing experts warned that such trials are never easy to win. Legal and policing experts as well as lawyers who have worked on such cases attribute these outcomes to consistent factors: police have considerable legal latitude to use force, including deadly force (

   Senior Luciano Wells said, “George Floyd’s death hit America hard. I hope this conviction sets this country on the right path to ensuring the proper treatment of all people.”