Sunday, December 5, 2021

George Floyd murder: Derek Chauvin gets jail for over 22 years

The US white ex-police officer convicted of murdering African-American man George Floyd in Minneapolis in May 2020 has been sentenced to 22 years and six months in jail.

The judge said Derek Chauvin’s sentence was based “on your abuse of a position of trust and authority, and also the particular cruelty shown” to Mr Floyd.

Mr Floyd, 48, died after Chauvin knelt on his neck for nine minutes.

His murder caused global protests against racism and police brutality.

Chauvin, 45, was convicted of second-degree murder and other charges last month. During his trial, his lawyer described the killing as “an error made in good faith”.

He and three other former officers are separately charged with violating George Floyd’s civil rights. The Floyd family and their supporters welcomed the sentence.

“This historic sentence brings the Floyd family and our nation one step closer to healing by delivering closure and accountability,” lawyer Ben Crump tweeted.

Mr Floyd’s sister Bridgett Floyd said the sentence “shows that matters of police brutality are finally being taken seriously” but there was still “a long way to go”.

President Joe Biden said the sentence “seemed to be appropriate” but admitted that he did not know all the details.

What was said during the sentencing hearing?

Mr Floyd’s daughter Gianna, aged seven, appeared in a video recording, saying she missed him and she loved him.

“I ask about him all the time,” she said. “My daddy always used to help me brush my teeth.”

The judge said the case had been painful for the community and the country, but above all, for Mr Floyd’s family.

“What the sentence is not based on is emotion, or sympathy, but at the same time, I want to acknowledge the deep and tremendous pain that all the families are feeling, especially the Floyd family,” said Judge Peter Cahill.

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