Former Minneapolis, Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin has already been convicted and sentenced for charges related to George Floyd’s May 2020 death.
As the Washington Examiner explained, he also faces federal charges of violating Floyd’s civil rights — and he is expected to change his not guilty plea to guilty in a court appearance this week.
Chauvin faces prospect of dual sentences
Along with three other former Minneapolis officers involved in the deadly incident, Chauvin initially pleaded not guilty to the federal charges handed down by a grand jury earlier this year.
According to ABC News, Chauvin is specifically accused of unlawfully using his governmental authority to violate Floyd’s civil rights through force.
His charges related to allegedly violating Floyd’s constitutional protections against unreasonable search and seizure and unreasonable force by a police officer. Furthermore, Chauvin faces a federal charge related to failing to provide the suspect with medical care.
Sentencing guidelines suggest that he could receive another 27 to 33 years in prison for these crimes upon conviction, likely with credit granted if he assumes responsibility.
It remains to be seen whether he would serve that term concurrently with the 22-plus year sentence he received after his conviction on state charges.
Separate charges stem from 2017 incident
If he is given concurrent sentences, another unknown factor is whether he would serve the dual sentences in a state facility or be moved to an arguably safer federal prison for the remainder of his term.
Although early indicators suggest he will plead guilty when he appears in court on Wednesday, the same cannot be said for federal charges related to a separate case involving a 2017 incident in which he allegedly used unreasonable force to deprive a 14-year-old boy of his civil rights.
Chauvin is accused of grabbing the teen and striking him repeatedly on his head with a flashlight before using a restraint technique similar to that seen on the video depicting Floyd’s final moments.
The other three ex-cops involved in the Floyd case will likely feel some relief upon Chauvin’s guilty plea after collectively attempting, albeit unsuccessfully, to separate their trials from his.
Regardless of how the high-profile case plays out in the courtroom, this ongoing narrative is sure to continue receiving widespread coverage.