Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis Police officer whose actions sparked protests worldwide, has been convicted of the murder of George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for more than nine minutes.
Chauvin, 45, was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter following two days of deliberations by jurors.
The masked defendant showed no outward reaction as the verdicts were read out. Afterward, he left the court through a side door and was taken to a facility in Stillwater, Minnesota, where he will remain until he is sentenced.
A crowd of several hundred had gathered for the verdicts, and cheers went up as each one was announced. The verdicts come almost one year after video footage of Chauvin kneeling on Mr. Floyd’s neck and back went viral, causing shock and outrage around the world.
Philonise Floyd, the brother of the victim, was visibly nervous in the minutes before the verdicts were announced.
“I was just praying they would find him guilty. As an African American, we usually never get justice.” he told reporters outside the court.
Benjamin Crump, the Floyd family’s lawyer, said in a statement: “Justice for Black America is justice for all of America. This case is a turning point in American history for accountability of law enforcement and sends a clear message we hope is heard clearly in every city and every state.”
Chauvin faces up to 40 years in prison for second-degree murder, a maximum of 25 years for third-degree murder and up to 10 years for manslaughter, though it is unlikely he will receive the maximum sentence for any of the three charges. Sentencing has been set for eight weeks from now.