OPINION | This article contains political commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Former Minneapolis Police Officer has been convicted of Second and Third-degree murder, according to NBC News.
In addition to being convicted of Second and Third Degree murder, Derek Chauvin was also convicted of second-degree manslaughter.
Derek Chauvin faces up to 75 years in prison, according to reports.
The second-degree murder charge holds a maximum sentence of 40 years alone.
The third-degree murder charge holds a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison.
The second-degree manslaughter charge holds a maximum sentence of 10 years.
At first, the second-degree manslaughter charge had been dismissed but had been reinstated.
The jury was a panel of seven women and 5 men.
Derek Chauvin a white police officer knelt on George Floyd’s neck for around 9 minutes while Floyd yelled that he could not breathe.
The Prosecutors argued that as Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck he depraved Floyd of oxygen.
After many minutes prosecutors stated that Floyd died from asphyxiation.
Defense attorneys countered these arguments with claims that Floyd’s use of illegal drugs and pre-existing heart conditions were the cause of his death.
Jurors did not rule out other possible theories such as exposure to too much carbon monoxide.
Prosecutors focused on the 9 minutes and 29 seconds that Chauvin was kneeling on George Floyd’s neck during closing arguments.
Chauvin’s defense attorney claimed that “the 9 minutes and 29 seconds ignores the previous 16 minutes and 59 seconds” of what lead up to Floyd being detained and brought to the ground.
38 witnesses were called upon to give a testimony.
Many witnesses claimed that they are haunted by the death of George Floyd because they wish they had done more to save him.
Reports reveal that Chauvin was ready to plead guilty to the third-degree murder change only days after Floyd’s death.
The plea was rejected by William Barr because it was too early in the investigation.
From NBC News:
Prosecutors called 38 witnesses, including the teenager who recorded the widely seen bystander video that brought global attention to Floyd’s death. She and other bystanders who testified said they are haunted by Floyd’s death and that they wish they had done more to try to save his life. The defense called seven witnesses, two of whom were experts.
Floyd’s death touched off international protests against police brutality and racial injustice. The city of Minneapolis has spent months preparing for the trial and for the potential of unrest over the verdict.