Murder Charge Upgraded on Derek Chauvin, 3 Other Cops Involved Charged in George Floyd’s Death

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The four officers involved in George Floyd’s death, which has sparked a rise in protests throughout the U.S., have been charged.

The importance: Derek Chauvin, the man who put Floyd in an unauthorized chokehold and eventually killed him on May 25, was fired on the day after but hadn’t been charged yet. The three other officers, Tou Thao, Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng have also officially been acknowledged as accessories to the murder and will be taken into custody.

  • It was announced by Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison this afternoon in a livestream from PBS NewsHour.
  • Chauvin’s original charge for third-degree murder has been upgraded to the second-degree. Meaning he now has three on his slate: second-degree manslaughter, third-degree murder, and second-degree murder, according to CBS Minnesota.
  • If found that the killing was intentional, Minnesota’s guidelines may mean that Chauvin could get a prison sentence of up to 40 years from all the charges combined, according to the Daily Mail.
  • Thao, Lane and Kueng are charged with two counts of aiding and abetting second-degree unintentional murder and manslaughter, where the charges can also equate up to 40 years in prison, according to NPR.

A “bittersweet moment”: The attorney representing the Floyds posted a statement on the family’s thoughts to Twitter, calling it such because Chauvin’s sentence was not recognized as first-degree murder.

  • Despite the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s autopsy report, stating Floyd’s death was a result of being “restrained by the police, his underlying health conditions and any potential intoxicants in his system,” and ruled as a homicide.
  • Minnesota’s guidelines require “proof of planning out the crime,” for the life-sentence, according to Star Tribune.

Protests for George Floyd and Black Lives Matter continue to go on within the nation regardless of curfews while drawing mixed reactions to those supporting it and those angered by the looting to come out of it.

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