Minneapolis, MN – Former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin is reportedly in plea deal talks with federal prosecutors and both parties are close to an agreement.
Sources told WCCO that Chauvin was close to reaching a deal and said that was probably what the former officer was referring to at his sentencing hearing when he addressed George Floyd’s family.
“Due to legal matters, I’m not able to give a full formal statement… I give my condolences to the Floyd family, there’s gonna be some other information in the future that will be of interest and I hope these will give you some peace of mind,” Chauvin said as he turned to face the family members who were in the courtroom.
Sources told WCCO that Chauvin was likely referring to the plea negotiation on the federal civil right charges for Floyd’s death.
As part of the plea deal with federal prosecutors, Chauvin is expected to have to explain to the court what happened the day that Floyd died and his role in it.
Floyd’s brother, Terrance Floyd, asked that question when he gave his victim impact statement at Chauvin’s sentencing, WCCO reported.
“We don’t want to see no more slaps on the wrist,” Terrance Floyd told the judge. “We’ve been through that already.”
Then Floyd’s brother turned and faced Chauvin and addressed him directly, WCCO reported.
“What was going through your head when you had your knee on my brother’s neck?” he asked.
Sources said that the plea deal Chauvin has negotiated would give him a 20-to-25-year federal sentence that could be served concurrently with his state sentence, WCCO reported.
If convicted on the federal civil rights charges, he could be sentenced to life in prison.
Chauvin has also reportedly negotiated to serve his sentences in federal prison rather than a Minnesota state facility, WCCO reported.
A Hennepin County jury found the former police officer guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter on April 20.
Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill sentenced Chauvin to 270 months, or 22-and-a half years, in prison for Floyd’s murder.
Floyd died as he was being arrested by Minneapolis police officers on May 25, 2020 and his death sparked nationwide protests and riots for months.
Videos from the scene showed Chauvin kneeled on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes as the man begged for his life and then died.
Cahill said he had given Chauvin 10 years more than the state’s presumptive sentence because he had abused his authority and demonstrative particular cruelty towards Floyd.
Further aggravating factors included the fact that children were present during the incident and that Chauvin committed the crime as a group with at least three other people assisting him, the judge said.
He gave Chauvin credit for 199 days served and remanded him to the custody of the prison system.
Cahill also said Chauvin would be banned from possessing firearms, ammunition, or explosives for the rest of his life, and would have to submit DNA and register as a violent offender.
Under Minnesota law, Chauvin could only be sentenced on the most serious of the charges he was convicted on, the Associated Press reported.
Chauvin’s most serious charge was second-degree murder (unintentional) while committing a felony.
Minnesota’s sentencing guidelines allowed Cahill to sentence Chauvin to as few as 12.5 years or as many as 40 years, WCCO reported.
Experts had predicted the judge would give Chauvin at least twice the recommended minimum.
Chauvin will be eligible for parole after he has served two-thirds of his prison sentence if he has not had any disciplinary problems while incarcerated, according to Minnesota law.
All four officers who were involved with Floyd’s arrest have been charged by federal prosecutors for violating his civil rights.
The trial of the other three officers, which was originally scheduled for August, has been bumped to next year to allow the federal prosecution to be completed first.