MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Prosecutors are pushing for harsher potential sentences for Derek Chauvin and the other three former Minneapolis officers involved in the death of George Floyd.
In a brief filed Monday, attorney Matthew Frank, of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison’s Office, argued that an “upward departure” from the regular state sentencing guidelines was warranted because the officers were in a position of power over Floyd and he was particularly vulnerable.
Floyd died on Memorial Day outside a south Minneapolis convenience store. Officers were called to the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue on a report that Floyd tried to pass a $20 counterfeit bill.
Cellphone video of Floyd’s arrest showed Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes as he lay handcuffed, repeatedly saying he couldn’t breathe. Two of the other officers, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane, helped hold Floyd down while a fourth officer, Tou Thao, dealt with bystanders.
Chauvin is charged with second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. The other three former officers are facing charges of aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter. Their trial is scheduled for March. As of last week, all of the officers have posted bail and are out of custody.
The brief filed Monday was a response to a request from Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill, who had asked in September for an explanation as to why an upward departure would be warranted in the event the officers are convicted.