DEREK Chauvin was handcuffed and taken into custody after he was found guilty on all three charges – and faces up to 75 years behind bars.
The former cop was cuffed immediately following the bombshell jury verdict, with Minnesota court authorities saying Chauvin’s sentence would begin instantly.
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The judge confirmed the ruling shortly after 4pm as Chauvin looked on – moments before he was led away in handcuffs out of the court.
As Judge Cahill read the three charges – second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter – Chauvin’s eyes darted back and forth, but the officer showed little emotion.
After the three charges were read, Chauvin stood from his seat as a sheriff handcuffed him.
Chauvin exchanged a glance with his lawyer Eric Nelson, who said something inaudible to Chauvin, who in turn nodded his head as he was led away by the sheriff who had cuffed him.
As Chauvin walked out of the courtroom, Judge Cahill proclaims “We’re adjourned.”
The racially diverse jury – anonymous and sequestered from the outside world – deliberated for four hours on Monday and resumed deliberating Tuesday morning at 9am.
The judge commended the jurors for their “heavy-duty” service while cheers erupted outside.
As each of the charges against Chauvin was separate, jurors had to reach a separate verdict for each count. They had to conclude Chauvin’s actions were a “substantial causal factor” in Floyd’s death and that his use of force was unreasonable.
Judge Peter Cahill said Chauvin will be sentenced in eight weeks. As he was found guilty of all three counts, Chauvin could face a maximum sentence of up to 75 years in prison.
Deliberations over Chauvin’s fate began on Monday afternoon after both the prosecution and defense made their closing arguments for conviction and acquittal, respectively, summing up the evidence.
During the three-week trial, prosecutors set out to prove that Chauvin acted recklessly when he knelt down on George Floyd’s neck for nine minutes and 29 seconds during an arrest on Memorial Day last year.
That neck restraint, prosecutors argued, was the direct cause of Floyd’s death and laid out evidence that he died from low levels of oxygen.
The defense, meanwhile, countered that Chauvin had acted within reason by restraining Floyd, who they claimed had been non-compliant and under the influence of drugs.
Led by Nelson, the defense argued that Floyd had in fact died from a heart attack brought on by a myriad of factors, including heart disease and drug use.
A total of 45 witnesses were called to the stand throughout the course of the trial – 38 for the state and seven for the defense – including the Minneapolis police chief and other officers who openly condemned Chauvin’s actions.
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