Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal criminal charges in the death of George Floyd last year — avoiding a trial, but likely will end up spending more time in prison.
Chauvin was convicted on state charges in April in Floyd’s death and was sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison. On Wednesday, he pleaded guilty to two federal charges of violating Floyd’s civil rights.
Chauvin initially pleaded not guilty to the charges in September.
The charges say Chauvin deprived Floyd of his rights during the arrest and then failed to provide medical aid.
During the arrest in May 2020, Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck for nearly 10 minutes while Floyd gasped for air and said repeatedly that he couldn’t breathe. Video of the arrest and Floyd’s death sparked civil rights movements across the United States and around the world.
In April, Chauvin was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter for Floyd’s death. Any sentence for the federal charges would run concurrently with the state sentence.
Prosecutors have requested the maximum sentence for the federal charges, 25 years, which means Chauvin is likely to serve a few additional years beyond his state sentence.
The judge in the case did not set a sentencing date at Wednesday’s hearing.
Three other officers who were involved in Floyd’s arrest are scheduled to go to trial in March.
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