The policeman sentenced for the murder of African American George Floyd and his three former colleagues present on the day of the tragedy pleaded not guilty on Tuesday at the start of a new procedure, before federal justice this time.
Derek Chauvin, 45, has never admitted any wrong in the death of the black forty-something, on whose neck he remained kneeling for nearly ten minutes in May 2020 in Minneapolis. He was convicted of murder and is serving a 22-and-a-half-year prison sentence handed down in June after an extraordinary trial in the state court of Minnesota.
During the hearings, his lawyer had hammered out that he had contented himself with following the procedures in force in the police force and that the death of George Floyd was due to health problems combined with the ingestion of drugs, without convincing the jurors . His three former colleagues, Tou Thao, Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane, are to be tried in March for “complicity in murder” also by the justice of Minnesota.
All four men pleaded not guilty
In parallel, the four men were indicted by the federal justice for “violation of the constitutional rights” of George Floyd. It is in this component that they appear Tuesday, by video, before a federal judge. At the start of the hearing, they all “pleaded not guilty”. The local press had however reported that Derek Chauvin was negotiating a plea-guilty agreement in order to avoid a new trial.
At the end of the first trial, he had fueled speculation by telling the Floyd family: “there will be new information in the future, which I hope will be interesting and which will give you peace of mind.”
“Double” lawsuits are permitted in the United States but relatively rare, and reflect the importance of this case to the heart. giant protests against racism and police violence across the United States.