Former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced Friday to 22 and a half years in prison for the murder of George Floyd, more than one year after Floyd’s death sparked an international movement against police brutality.
Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill, who presided over Chauvin’s murder trial, handed down a sentence of 270 months for charges of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s May 25, 2020, death. Chauvin received a credit of 199 days served in prison. A jury convicted him of the charges on April 20.
“What the sentence is not based on is emotion or sympathy,” Cahill said. “But at the same time, I want to acknowledge the deep and tremendous pain that all the families are feeling, especially the Floyd family. I’m not going to attempt to be profound or clever because it’s not the appropriate time. I’m not basing my sentence on public opinion. I’m not basing it on any attempt to send any messages.”
Chauvin faced significant prison time for Floyd’s death. The most serious offense, second-degree murder, carries a penalty of up to 40 years in prison, according to Minnesota law. The other charges, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, can result in imprisonment of up to 25 and 10 years, respectively. Prosecutors wanted 30 years, while Chauvin’s attorney, Eric Nelson, asked for probation and time served. Floyd’s family wanted the maximum sentence.