MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison for the murder of George Floyd, whose dying gasps under Chauvin’s knee led to the biggest outcry against racial injustice in the U.S. in generations.
The punishment — which fell short of the 30 years that prosecutors had requested — came after Chauvin broke his more than yearlong silence in court to offer condolences to the Floyd family and say he hopes more information coming out will eventually give them “some peace of mind.”
With good behavior, Chauvin, 45, could be paroled after serving two-thirds of his sentence, or about 15 years.
Outside the courthouse, a crowd of about 50 people clasped hands and placed their hands on each other’s shoulders.
The reaction was subdued as people debated whether the sentence was long enough.
Some cursed in disgust.
In imposing the punishment, Judge Peter Cahill went beyond the 12 1/2-year sentence prescribed under state guidelines, citing “your abuse of a position of trust and authority and also the particular cruelty” shown to Floyd.