Still facing trial, three Minneapolis police officers– J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao– are still yet to take the stand for their involvement in the death of George Floyd.
On April 20th, Derek Chauvin– the former Minnesota police officer associated with the murder of George Floyd– has been found guilty on all charges brought forth against him.
Chauvin (45) was charged with unintentional murder in the second-degree, third-degree murder, and the second-degree intentional manslaughter of George Floyd. The ultimate verdict found Chauvin guilty on all accounts. After the verdict was received, the Judge– Peter Cahill– revoked Chauvin’s post-bail, shuffling the defendant out of the courtroom in handcuffs. Chauvin’s sentencing is scheduled to begin 8 weeks after yesterday’s conviction. However, it has been stated by prosecutors that Chauvin could potentially face decades in prison: 40 years for the max sentance for 2nd-degree unintentional murder, 25 years for third-degree murder, and 10 years for 2nd-degree manslaughter, though these sentences could look shorter as Chauvin is a first-time offender—12.5, 12.5, and four years respectively.
The American mainstream media has actively followed Chauvin’s trial due to the political aspect of it. Leading up to the verdict, politicalization of the trial caused tensions to rise. Furthering such sentiments, shortly before the verdict had been received, Rep. Maxine Waters (D, MI) had been recorded encouraging ‘action’ against jurors if they did not find Chauvin guilty. Additionally, many left-wing paramilitary militias have stated that political demonstrations would occur if the verdict did not find Chauvin guilty. The current U.S. President, Joe Biden (D), even weighed in on the trial, noting that he hoped the jury would make the ‘overwhelming’ and ‘right’ decision. Biden described the Floyd family, saying “They’re a good family and they’re calling for peace and tranquility no matter what that verdict is,” Biden said. “I’m praying the verdict is the right verdict. I think it’s overwhelming, in my view. I wouldn’t say that unless the jury was sequestered now.”
Due to such contributions by politicians and the undeniable political significance of the trial, many critics of the verdict have accused such interjections as legal interference. Thus, many of the critics have suggested that the ultimate decision was a populist/political or symbolic one, not one based on legal procedure. Expanding upon this sentiment, such critics have argued that the verdict be challenged and/or reviewed by a legal committee in a city other than Minneapolis.
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ARTICLE: CARSON WOLF
POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: NEW YORK POST