MINNEAPOLIS, Minn., April 20, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — A jury in Minneapolis has found former city police officer Derek Chauvin guilty on all charges in the 2020 death of George Floyd, 46, who died after Chauvin knelt on his neck for 9:29 minutes as Floyd and bystanders begged the officer to stop.
Chauvin, 45, was found to be guilty of:
- Second-degree unintentional murder
- Third-degree murder
- Second-degree manslaughter
Chauvin’s bail was revoked, and he was taken back into police custody. He will be sentenced at a future date and could face as many as four decades in prison.
Floyd died on May 25 of last year, after a shopkeeper accused him of using a counterfeit $20 for a purchase, and police were summoned. Chauvin, the senior officer at the scene, knelt on Floyd’s neck as an attempt to subdue the suspect.
Floyd was unconscious when Chauvin removed his knee, and Floyd was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Utah Gov. Spencer Cox on Monday released a statement urging Utahns to remain peaceful after the verdict, whatever it might be.
It was Floyd’s death that sparked protests in Salt Lake City and elsewhere in the state nearly a year ago. In Salt Lake City, organizers planned a peaceful protest, but a small percentage of people attending later turned destructive, vandalizing state and commercial buildings, and flipping and burning an SLCPD patrol car.
“We understand that tensions around the Derek Chauvin trial remain high,” Cox’s Monday statement said.
“We acknowledge and respect the judicial process that has played out and the weighty decisions made by the judge and jury. As the verdict is announced, we urge Utahns to respond within the bounds guaranteed by the First Amendment. We will respect personal safety, life and property. Any threats against such will not be tolerated.”
Eventually, Salt Lake City police were called out in riot gear, and a number of arrests were made. Several people also suffered injuries in the melee.
Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson released the following statement Monday: “My thoughts are with the friends and family of George Floyd and the nation as a whole. After having the opportunity to observe much of the Derek Chauvin trial, I am pleased with the results of the jury. It’s clear that George Floyd was murdered without remorse. Our nation has skilled and committed police officers but also those that operate in their roles with bias and without regard for human life and liberty. There needs to be accountability. As a community, I ask that we work collaboratively to address systemic issues regarding race and justice as we seek to reshape our institutions in order to promote accountability and justice.”
Around 250 individuals gathered at the Salt Lake City Public Safety building early Tuesday evening and are set to march toward the murals of George Floyd and others who have died at the hands of police, in the area of 300 W. 800 South. By 7 p.m., the crowd had swelled to around 500 people.
Gephardt Daily has a crew at the scene and will update this developing story through the evening.