Yes, Derek Chauvin Was Found Guilty in the Death of George Floyd, But What’s…Next?

Illustration for article titled Yes, Derek Chauvin Was Found Guilty in the Death of George Floyd, But What’s…Next?
Photo: Minnesota Department of Corrections (AP)

Derek Chauvin, the former Minnesota cop who kneeled on George Floyd’s neck for over nine minutes until he became unresponsive and later died, was found guilty of murder Tuesday. Chauvin’s bail was revoked, and he was immediately taken into custody.


Here is everything we know about what happens next for Chauvin:

Where is Derek Chauvin now?

Chauvin is being held in the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Oak Park Heights in a “segregated housing unit for his own safety,” a prison spokesperson told CNN. There is a metal paper towel dispenser in Chauvin’s cell where he has reportedly been practicing looking dumb AF.

Chauvin is expected to remain in police custody until his sentencing.

So when is his sentencing?

Well, that won’t be for another two months. CNN notes that Chauvin will be sentenced around the second week of June.

How much time is he looking at?

OK, so here is where things get tricky AF. Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree murder which carries up to 40 years in prison; third degree murder which carries up to 25 years, and up to 10 years for manslaughter. Which, by my math...give me a second to carry the out to about 700,000 years in hell.


But the reality is Chauvin could face as little as 12 1/2 years in jail.

Let me explain: So, the sentencing is up to the judge, and it’s based on several factors that could sway the judge’s decision either way.


From CNN:

Chauvin has no prior criminal record. The state’s guidelines say that for such a person, the presumptive sentence for both second-degree and third-degree murder is 12 1/2 years. The judge is given discretion to hand down a sentence between 10 years and eight months and 15 years for each.

Second-degree manslaughter carries a presumptive sentence of four years for someone with no record, according to the guidelines. The judge’s discretion ranges from three years and five months to four years and eight months.


Prosecutors are asking for a tougher sentence BECAUSE CHAUVIN KNEELED ON FLOYD’S NECK FOR NINE MINUTES as onlookers begged for him to get off of Floyd. Prosecutors are expected to note that Floyd’s death was cruel and that children witnessed him die.

If the judge agrees, Chauvin could be looking at the higher end of the sentencing guideline. The sentence is expected to be served concurrently, meaning all of the sentences would be folded into the highest sentence. For instance, if Chauvin gets 15 years for one charge, and 10 for another, he will only serve 15 years in prison, not 25.


What about the other cops who stood and watched?

Don’t worry; their day of reckoning is soon, as Tou Thao, Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kuengare will head to court in August. All three have been charged with “aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter,” and will be tried together, CNN reports.

Senior Editor @ The Root, boxes outside my weight class, when they go low, you go lower.



Shouldn’t the penalty for cops actually be harsher? If you want the privilege our society bestows upon law enforcement you should also be willing to pay a higher price for your negligence.