After deliberating for 10.5 hours, the jury has reached a decision in Derek Chauvin’s trial.
On Tuesday, it was announced that the former Minneapolis police officer was found guilty on all three charges — second-degree unintentional murder, second-degree manslaughter, and third-degree murder — for the killing of George Floyd.
On May 25, 2020, Chauvin was seen on video pinning his knee on Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds, previously reported as 8 minutes and 46 seconds.
Floyd — an unarmed 46-year-old Black man who had been accused of passing a counterfeit $20 bill at a grocery store — was pronounced dead at a hospital later that evening.
Following the incident, Chauvin was fired from his job, and was charged with second-degree unintentional murder and second-degree manslaughter. Though a judge dismissed his third-degree murder charge last October, it was reinstated in March.
He had pleaded not guilty to all of these charges.
The three other police officers involved — Thomas Lane, Tou Thao, and J. Alexander Kueng — have all been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.
During Chauvin’s murder trial, prosecutor Jerry Blackwell asserted that Floyd died as a result of Chauvin’s excessive force.
“He put his knees upon his neck and his back, grinding and crushing him, until the very breath — no, ladies and gentlemen — until the very life was squeezed out of him,” Blackwell said.
However, defense lawyer Eric Nelson blamed Floyd’s substance abuse on his death and said his heart issues were fatally exacerbated by his drug intake.
With regard to his client’s actions, Nelson said Chauvin used a “necessary” amount of force detaining Floyd.
“You will learn that Derek Chauvin did exactly what he had been trained to do over the course of his 19-year career,” Nelson said in his opening statement.
Following Floyd’s passing, protests erupted over the world denouncing police brutality and systemic racism.
In March, the Minneapolis City Council approved a $27 million civil settlement with Floyd’s family.
Per documents in state probate court, Floyd is survived by 11 known heirs, including five children and six siblings who live in Texas, North Carolina, Florida, and New York.