Derek Chauvin isn’t completely through with court battles. He was convicted in the murder of George Floyd while on duty as a Minneapolis police officer. He’s also got a pending federal civil rights case related to the matter.
The former police officer has now taken care of at least one of those entanglements. Chauvin initially pleaded not guilty to violating Floyd’s civil rights. That plea has now been reversed as Chauvin has changed to a guilty plea in the matter, according to the BBC.
This means that the disgraced officer will avoid another trial. He will most likely have time added to his prison sentence. He is currently serving a 22.5 year sentence for the crime.
The new plea will likely mean a lighter federal sentence for Chauvin. The deal was likely made because his legal team didn’t see a path to an acquittal if the case went to trial. U.S. prosecutors typically recommend 25 years for a civil rights violation such as this. The plea will likely offer Chauvin the opportunity to serve the terms concurrently.
Three other officers, who were there on the day of Floyd’s killing, have also been charged with federal crimes. Alexander Keung, Thomas Lane, and Tou Thao have also been charged with violating Floyd’s civil rights. Their state trial on charges that they aided and abetted in Floyd’s murder will begin in March.
As the consequences continue to roll in, the officers involved in Floyd’s murder are facing stiff legal penalties. George Floyd was killed after Chauvin pressed on his neck with his leg for more than nine minutes. The other officers just stood and watched. Their actions are now playing out in the criminal justice system. Floyds legacy is still being felt in social justice movements throughout the world.
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