Derek Chauvin sentenced to 21 years in prison for violating George Floyd's civil rights

Derek Chauvin.
(Image credit: Minnesota Department of Corrections via Getty Images)

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced on Thursday to 21 years in prison for violating George Floyd's civil rights.

In May 2020, Chauvin knelt on Floyd's neck for more than nine minutes while detaining him outside of a Minneapolis market. Floyd, an unarmed Black man, said he couldn't breathe, and then became unresponsive. In April 2021, Chauvin was found guilty during a state trial of second- and third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, and sentenced to 22-and-a-half years in prison. His federal sentence will be served concurrently.

U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson on Thursday told Chauvin what he did to Floyd was "simply wrong" and "offensive," and his actions "absolutely destroyed the lives" of three other officers who were at the scene with him. Those officers — Tou Thao, J. Alexander Keung, and Thomas Lane — were convicted in February on federal charges of depriving Floyd of his civil rights, and are awaiting sentencing.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.

SUBSCRIBE & SAVE
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/jacafc5zvs1692883516.jpg

Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up
To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us