Derek Chauvin guilty plea expected in George Floyd federal case
(FOX 9) – Derek Chauvin has notified the federal court in Minnesota of a change of plea to charges that he violated George Floyd’s constitutional rights. A change of plea hearing has been scheduled for Wednesday morning at 9 a.m. at the federal courthouse in St. Paul.
The scheduling of the hearing signal that Chauvin intends to plead guilty to the charges.
Chauvin is charged with violating Floyd’s right to be free of unreasonable force by a police officer when he pressed his left knee on Floyd’s neck and held his right knee on Floyd’s back and arm as Floyd lay on the ground, handcuffed and not resisting, and continued to do even after Floyd became unresponsive.
Chauvin spoke at his sentencing last June. He told the court that due to some additional legal matters, he was not able to give a full formal statement, but he expressed his condolences to the Floyd family.
“There’s going to be some other information in the future that would be of interest and I hope things would give you some peace of mind,” Chauvin told the Floyd family.
This was the first time Chauvin had spoken publicly on the case since Floyd’s murder. During his trial, he declined to testify in his own defense.
Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill sentenced Chauvin to 270 months, or 22 1/2 years, in prison. Although he was convicted on three counts–second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter–he was only sentenced on the most serious charge, which was second-degree murder.
In November, a federal judge ruled the four former Minneapolis police officers facing civil rights charges in the murder of George Floyd will stand trial together
The judge denied a motion by J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane, and Tou Thao to separate the federal trial. Derek Chauvin along with Kueng, Lane, and Thao are accused of depriving Floyd of his rights while acting under government authority during his killing in May of 2020
The defendants had hoped to break up the trial, similar to how Chauvin was tried separately of Kueng, Lane, and Thao in district court earlier this year. Chauvin was found guilty of murder in that case but has filed for an appeal. The other three former police officers are still awaiting trial, with their case delayed to 2022 due to the federal proceedings.
Chauvin is also charged in a second federal indictment for a 2017 incident involving the neck restraint of a 14-year-old boy.