Chauvin, a former white Minneapolis police officer, was convicted of the murder of Floyd, a black man.
Derek Chauvin, a former white Minneapolis police officer convicted of the murder of George Floyd, a black man, was sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison Friday.
After the emotional testimony of Floyd’s family and Chauvin’s mother, along with brief condolences from Chauvin himself, Judge Peter Cahill said the sentence was not based on emotions, sympathy or public opinion.
Prosecutors had sought a 30-year sentence for Chauvin, who was convicted of second-degree murder. Minnesota sentencing guidelines recommended that Chauvin be sentenced to 12 and a half years because he has no criminal record.
The 22-and-a-half-year sentence is ten years longer than state guidelines and Cahill justified the longer sentence by citing “aggravating factors.”
In his sentencing last month, Cahill found that prosecutors had shown there were four aggravating factors that would allow him to serve a longer prison sentence than the sentencing guidelines would dictate.
The judge agreed that Chauvin was abusing his position of trust and authority; that he treated Floyd with special cruelty by kneeling on his neck for more than nine minutes, even when Floyd declared “I can’t breathe”; that he committed the crime as part of a group with three other agents; and that he committed murder in front of children.
Defense attorney Eric Nelson asked the judge to consider not only the aggravating factors, but also the mitigating ones. Nelson argued that it proved futile Chauvin did not enter this trial as a “career criminal,” but lived “an honorable life.”
This is breaking news. More to come…