Minnesota prosecutors are seeking a 30-year sentence for former police officer Derek Chauvin, who was convicted in April of the murder of George Floyd in May 2020.
Chauvin’s defense has instead asked for a sentence of probation and time served.
Chauvin, a white officer who knelt on Floyd’s neck for over nine minutes while Floyd was in his custody, was found guilty of murder and manslaughter by a Minneapolis jury.
Judge Peter Cahill ruled that there were “aggravating circumstances” in Floyd’s murder, giving him discretion to sentence Chauvin to a term longer than regular state guidelines. In Minnesota, 12½ years is the average sentence for a first-offense case like Chauvin’s.
But prosecutors said that 30 years would more “properly account for the profound impact of defendant’s conduct on the victim, the victim’s family and the community.”
The most serious count against Chauvin, second-degree murder, carries a maximum sentence of 40 years.
Chauvin’s sentencing is scheduled for June 25. He has been in jail since his April 20 conviction and faces separate federal civil rights charges in Floyd’s death.
Floyd’s murder inspired global protests against institutionalized racism and police practices, particularly in the United States.
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