Almost a year after the killing of the African American George Floyd in a police operation in the USA, the main trial against the white ex-police officer Derek Chauvin begins. He is charged, among other things, with second degree murder, which has resulted in up to 40 years in prison in the state of Minnesota. The hearing begins on Monday (from 4:00 p.m. CEST) under heavy security in the city of Minneapolis. </p><div> <p>The 46-year-old Floyd was killed in a brutal arrest in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020. Videos have documented the police pushing the unarmed Floyd to the ground. Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd's neck for a good eight minutes while Floyd pleaded to let him breathe. According to the autopsy, Floyd passed out and died. The officers arrested Floyd on suspicion of paying with a fake $ 20 bill.</p>
Chauvin pleaded not guilty. The most serious charge is second degree murder without intent, which is equivalent to manslaughter. In addition, Chauvin is also accused of third-degree murder, which is up to 25 years in prison. He also has to answer for second degree manslaughter, which is followed by ten years in prison. The ex-cop is currently on bail and must be present during the trial.
The court finalized the jury selection last week. Judge Peter Cahill believes the main trial could take up to a month. The expectations of the process are high, because Floyd’s fate had led to mass protests against police violence and racism in the USA for months in the middle of the corona pandemic.