Former police officer, Derrick Chauvin, 45, has been convicted for the crime of murder and manslaughter, over the death of African- American, George Floyd by a United States jury.
The verdict was decided by a twelve-member jury, on Monday. The jury remained anonymous and unseen throughout the trial.
Chauvin, was found guilty on three charges; second degree murder, third degree murder, and manslaughter.
In Minnesota, second degree murder carries a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison, third degree murder is punishable by up to 25 years in prison. Second degree manslaughter is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
A motion was moved to have Chauvin’s bail revoked and he was led away from the dock in handcuffs and taken into custody by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office.Chauvin could spend decades in jail.
Hundreds of people cheered outside as the verdict was announced. This relieved most Americans, who had finally noted that “justice prevailed at last”.
Recall, George Floyd on May 25, 2020, in South Minneapolis, bought a pack of cigarettes at a convenience store. A shop assistant believed he had used a counterfeit $20 note, and called the police after Mr Floyd refuse to give the cigarettes.
When police arrived, they ordered Mr Floyd out of his parked car, handcuffed him. A struggle ensued when officers try to put a screaming Mr Floyd in their squad car, they wrestled him to the ground and pinned him under weight. The defendant, Derrick Chauvin, pressed his knee into the back of Mr Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, as the suspect and several by-standers pleaded for his life.
Mr Floyd could not breath, as he pleaded; when the ambulance arrived, Mr Floyd was motionless. He was pronounced dead about an hour later.
During Chauvin trial, the jury heard from 45 witnesses, and saw several hours of video footage.
Expert witnesses on behalf of the State, testified that Mr Floyd had died oflack of oxygen due to the manner of restrain employed by Chauvin and his colleagues.
Chauvin himself chose not to testify, invoking his right not to incriminate himself with his response.
Ijeoma Njoku reporting, Obinwannem News