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Derek Chauvin Judge Asked To Hand Out Severe Sentence By Attorney General

by : Cameron Frew on : 02 May 2021 15:08
Derek Chauvin Judge Asked To Hand Out Severe Sentence By Attorney GeneralPA/US House of Photography

Minnesota’s attorney general has asked for Derek Chauvin to be handed a severe prison sentence for the murder of George Floyd.

The former Minneapolis police officer was found guilty of third-degree murder, second-degree unintentional murder and second-degree manslaughter on April 21, after killing Floyd, 46, during an arrest last year.

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As Chauvin, 45, has no prior criminal history, he’d generally be eligible for the lowest sentences under state guidelines – for example, he could face 12.5 years behind bars for the second-degree murder charge instead of the maximum 40-year sentence.

However, according to a court filing, Attorney General Keith Ellison has asked Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill to consider ‘aggravating factors’ in his sentencing of Chauvin. ‘The facts proven beyond a reasonable doubt at trial demonstrate that five aggravating factors support an upward sentencing departure,’ it reads.

These include Floyd being a ‘particularly vulnerable victim’ in the incident, who was also treated with cruelty. The filing also cites Chauvin’s abuse of authority, having failed to ‘treat the sanctity of life and the protection of the public as paramount objectives’ while pushing his knee on Floyd’s neck.

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The fourth factor references the three other attending officers J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao, who will face manslaughter charges in court later this year, noting how Chauvin ‘committed the crime as part of a group of three or more persons who all actively participated in the crime.’

The fifth factor takes issue with Chauvin murdering Floyd in front of children who were witnesses at the scene. ‘Any one of these five aggravating factors would be sufficient on its own to warrant an upward sentencing departure. Here, all five apply,’ it reads.

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Chauvin’s attorney Eric Nelson has opposed a stronger sentence, arguing the prosecutors have failed to establish these aggravating factors taking place during the incident.

As per USA Today, he wrote: ‘The assault of Mr. Floyd occurred in the course of a very short time, involved no threats or taunting, such as putting a gun to his head and pulling the trigger… and ended when EMS finally responded to officers’ calls.’

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Cameron Frew

After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BJTC-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He's now left his Scottish homelands and taken up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.

Topics: News, Derek Chauvin, George Floyd, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Now, US

Credits

STATE OF MINNESOTA DISTRICT COURT COUNTY OF HENNEPIN FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT and 1 other
  1. STATE OF MINNESOTA DISTRICT COURT COUNTY OF HENNEPIN FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT

    STATE’S MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN SUPPORT OF BLAKELY AGGRAVATED SENTENCING FACTORS

  2. USA Today

    'Treated with particular cruelty': Minnesota attorney general requests severe sentence for Derek Chauvin in George Floyd killing