Derek Chauvin Changing Plea in Federal Civil Rights Case in Murder of George Floyd

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is set to appear at a change of plea hearing Wednesday in the federal civil rights case in the death of George Floyd, CNN reports.

Chauvin was convicted in April of killing Floyd by kneeling on Floyd’s neck for over nine minutes while Floyd was handcuffed and lying face-down in the street. The ex-cop is still facing a federal case for violating Floyd’s civil rights.

Chauvin is accused of depriving Floyd’s right to be free from “unreasonable seizure, which includes the right to be free from the use of unreasonable force by a police officer.”

In September, Chauvin pleaded not guilty to the charges. Three other former officers — Thomas Lane, J. Kueng, and Tou Thao —  along with Chauvin were all indicted in May and accused of depriving Floyd of his civil rights during the May 25, 2020, arrest that was captured by bystander video.

Thao, Kueng, and Lane also pleaded not guilty to the charges in September.

The indictment said, “the defendants saw George Floyd lying on the ground in clear need of medical care, and willfully failed to aid Floyd, thereby acting with deliberate indifference to a substantial risk of harm to Floyd.”

Chauvin’s change of plea comes after he was found guilty of second-and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter in April, NBC News reports. In June, Chauvin was sentenced to 22½ years in prison.

Under Minnesota law, Chauvin will have to serve two-thirds of his total sentence, or at least 15 years, before becoming eligible for supervised release for the remaining seven and a half years.

In a separate federal indictment, Chauvin is charged with violating a 14-year-old boy’s civil rights during an encounter in September 2017. During the incident, Chauvin is accused of holding the boy by the throat and striking his head multiple times with a flashlight.

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