The claim: Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 40 years in prison
On April 20, former Minneapolis cop Derek Chauvin was convicted of the murder of George Floyd, convicted of second degree murder, third degree murder and second degree manslaughter.
The verdict comes nearly a year after Chauvin was filmed kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes. The death of Floyd, who was unarmed, inspired protests across the country and calls for racial justice and changes in the police.
As the world reacts to the verdict, some are stepping forward and promoting inaccurate claims about a sentence that has yet to be handed down.
“This Minneapolis policeman, Derek Chauvin, 45, who was charged with murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd has been sentenced to 40 years behind bars,” a Facebook post dated April 20 said.
Checking the facts: Minnesota Police Association covering Chauvin’s defense, not Trump
The poster did not respond to USA TODAY’s request for comment.
The judge will set the sentence in 8 weeks
The Minnesota Felony Sentencing Guidelines recommend that a first-time offender, like Chauvin, spend 12 and a half years behind bars. But the prosecution calls for a sentence of up to 30 years because of “aggravating factors”.
Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill can award Chauvin concurrent or consecutive sentence on all three counts. Concurrent sentences are served at the same time while consecutive sentences are served on one charge at a time. A consecutive sentence, with the maximum imposed on each count, could last up to 75 years.
According to the Associated Press, Minnesota defendants typically serve two-thirds of their sentence in prison before being granted parole.
Checking the facts:Arrest video and autopsy contradict claim George Floyd’s death was staged
Chauvin is being held without bail until he is sentenced in about eight weeks. When Cahill ended the process, he said the exact dates would be in an upcoming scheduling order. The meeting order had not been uploaded to the Minnesota Judicial Branch website.
Our rating: False
We are evaluating the claim that Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 40 years in prison for the murder of George Floyd FALSE, based on our research. A jury has found Chauvin guilty on all counts, but the judge is not expected to decide the sentence until June.
Our sources of fact-checking:
- USA TODAY, April 20, “Derek Chauvin Convicted of All Charges for Murder of George Floyd: Updates”
- USA TODAY, April 20, “” More work to be done “: Derek Chauvin’s murder conviction brings relief, resolution to continue fighting for justice on behalf of George Floyd”
- Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Commission, August 1, 2019, “MINNESOTA SENTENCING GUIDELINES AND COMMENTARY”
- USA TODAY, April 20, “Derek Chauvin convicted of murder in death of George Floyd. How much time in prison could he face?”
- BBC, April 21, “George Floyd: When Will Derek Chauvin Be Sentenced?”
- Associated Press, April 21, “EXPLAINER: What to do after Chauvin’s conviction on 3 counts?”
- YouTube, MPR News, April 20, “Chauvin guilty of murder, manslaughter in murder of George Floyd”
- Minnesota Judicial Branch, accessed April 21, 27-CR-20-12646: State vs. Derek Chauvin
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