Federal prosecutors requested a 25-year prison sentence for former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for violating George Floyd’s civil rights during his arrest and murder, online court records showed.
In a motion filed on Wednesday in the District Court of Minnesota, U.S. Department of Justice attorneys said Chauvin abused his authority as a police officer and damaged public trust in law enforcement and the criminal justice system.
“He acted in callous and wanton disregard to Mr. Floyd’s life,” they wrote. “Further, the defendant admitted that he knew what he was doing was wrong.”
Chauvin, who is white, was seen in videos recorded by horrified onlookers kneeling on the handcuffed Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes in a brutal arrest on a Minneapolis street corner on May 25, 2020. The murder ignited one of the largest protest movements ever seen in the United States.
They recommended a 25-year prison sentence as part of a plea agreement between prosecutors and Chauvin, who pleaded guilty to violating Floyd’s civil rights in December. Chauvin faced the risk of life in prison if he went to trial.
District Judge Paul Magnuson has yet to set a date for the sentencing hearing.
A state judge sentenced Chauvin to 22-1/2 years in prison in June 2021 after a jury convicted him of the 2020 murder of Floyd.
In the motion on Wednesday, federal prosecutors asked for the federal sentence to run concurrently with the state sentence.
As part of the agreement, Chauvin also admitted he breached the civil rights of a boy he arrested in 2017 who was 14 at the time.
Two other former officers involved in the incident, Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng, will stand trial in state court in January. Another former officer Thomas Lane has pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting manslaughter.
All three were convicted of depriving Floyd of his civil rights in federal court in February.
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