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George Floyd Protest Mask
George Floyd Protest Mask
Photo Credit: Scott Olson for Getty Images

Minnesota Prosecutors Seek 30-Year Sentence for Ex-Cop Derek Chauvin's Role in George Floyd's Death

Minnesota prosecutors stated Derek Chauvin’s actions which led to George Floyd's death were “egregious” and that they "shocked the nation's conscience."

Minnesota prosecutors are seeking a 30-year prison sentence for Derek Chauvin, the ex-cop who was convicted of murder in George Floyd’s death.

Per NPR, Eric Nelson, his defense attorney is requesting that Chauvin “be sentenced to probation and time already served.” Minnesota’s sentencing guidelines note that he faces 12 ½ years in prison for his second-degree murder conviction as a first-time offender. Minnesota has asked Judge Peter Cahill to consider a lengthier sentence given the "aggravating factors" that have come out surrounding Floyd’s death. Legal documents have shown the judge agreed a heavier sentence was warranted noting the presence of children during the murder, Chauvin treating Floyd with “particular cruelty” and Chauvin’s abuse of authority during the recorded incident. 

Prosecutors stated Chauvin’s actions were “egregious” and that a sentence of 30 years would “properly account for the profound impact of Defendant’s conduct on the victim, the victim’s family, and the community.” They added that his actions “shocked the nation’s conscience.”

No sentence can undo Mr. Floyd’s death, and no sentence can undo the trauma Defendant’s actions have inflicted,” prosecutors wrote. “But the sentence the Court imposes must show that no one is above the law, and no one is below it. Defendant’s sentence must hold him fully accountable for his reprehensible conduct.” 

Eric Nelson, Chauvin’s defense attorney, notes that his client’s age, lack of criminal history, and support from his family and friends when he requested a lighter sentence. He also cited he’d be targeted behind bars. 

“Chauvin’s age weighs in his favor when determining a sentence. The life expectancy of police officers is generally shorter, and police officers have a significantly higher average probability of death from specific diseases than did males in the general population. He has been preliminary diagnosed with heart damage and may likely die at a younger age like many ex-law enforcement officers.”

Chauvin’s sentencing hearing will take place on June 25. Nelson is also seeking a new trial for Chauvin. According to a report, Nelson will be appointed to defend the ex-officer in his civil case related to Floyd’s murder and a case of a 14-year-old in a 2017 arrest.