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Chauvin to ask Supreme Court to review conviction in George Floyd murder

By Cheyanne M. Daniels,

1 hour ago

Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer convicted of murdering George Floyd, plans to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review his conviction after Minnesota’s top court declined to hear the case this week.

Chauvin’s attorney, William Mohrman, told The Associated Press they were “obviously disappointed” in the Minnesota Supreme Court’s decision on Tuesday.

Mohrman said the biggest issue they appealed was whether Chauvin was denied a fair trial in 2021 when the case was held in Minneapolis. The attorney cited the pretrial publicity that came with the case and the potential for violence if Chauvin had been acquitted.

Chauvin’s legal representation plans to raise that issue before the U.S. Supreme Court.

“This criminal trial generated the most amount of pretrial publicity in history,” Morhman told the AP. “More concerning are the riots which occurred after George Floyd’s death [and] led the jurors to all express concerns for their safety in the event they acquitted Mr. Chauvin — safety concerns which were fully evidenced by surrounding the courthouse in barbed wire and National Guard troops during the trial and deploying the National Guard throughout Minneapolis prior to jury deliberations.”

Chauvin’s attorneys have previously argued he was denied a fair trial when jurors weren’t sequestered before the trial.

The death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, sparked protests around the world. Video footage of Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck even as he cried “I can’t breathe” circulated the internet, and the footage was used in Chauvin’s trial. “I can’t breathe” became a rallying cry as protestors flooded the streets, demanding justice over his death.

Chauvin was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in April 2021. He is currently serving a 22 1/2-year sentence for that conviction.

Judge Peter Cahill wrote in a memorandum that Chauvin’s sentence was harsher than the state’s guidelines of 10 to 15 years because he “abused his position of trust and authority” and treated Floyd “without respect and denied him the dignity owed to all human beings.”

Chauvin later pleaded guilty to federal charges of violating Floyd’s civil rights. He was sentenced to 21 years in prison, set to run concurrently with his state sentence.

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