On June 25, Minnesota Judge Judge Peter Cahill sentenced Derek Chauvin to 22 1/2 years in prison for the murder of George Floyda punishment that exceeded the state's minimum guidelines but fell short of prosecutors' request of a 30-year sentence.
This past April, a jury found the former Minneapolis police officer, who is white, guilty of murdering Floyd, who was Black, last year. The killing prompted massive protests globally against racial injustice and also launched reviews of the police use of force.
Floyd's family delivered four victim impact statements in courtincluding a video conversation with Floyd's 7-year-old daughter, Gianna. Chauvin's mother, Carolyn Pawlenty, also spoke, telling Cahill at one point, "When you sentence my son, you will also be sentencing me." However, before the judge delivered the sentence (taking a 15-minute break after the families' statements), legal analysts said that Pawlenty did not seemingly have any empathy for Floyd and his family.
Chauvin was found guilty of unintentional second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. However, he was being punished only for the most serious charge: second-degree murder while committing a felony.
In a press statement, Illinois state Sen. Mike Simmons said, "There is no amount of prison time that could have brought justice to George Floyd or to the family that he was stolen from.
"Furthermore, one police officer facing accountability for murdering an unarmed Black man does not erase countless similar tragedies that have occurred and continue to happen with numbing frequency. It's time for active allyship from those who hold power and privilege to agitate for systemic changes right now that bring integrity to our systems that regularly steal Black lives away from us."