Hundreds of thousands of Americans tuned into Derek Chauvin’s sentencing on June 25. The former Minneapolis Police Department officer was found guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter charges for the killing of George Floyd in April.
Around two months since the conclusion of the trial, Judge Peter Cahill issued the convicted criminal a 22 1/2 year prison sentence on Friday (June 25). Exceeding the state’s minimum guidelines but falling short of the prosecutors’ request of a 30-year-sentence, Cahill added that he would be credited for the 199 days he has already served.
Social media has been buzzing with the news, with many crying out that the sentence is simply not long enough. Tina Knowles-Lawson, the mother of Beyoncé and Solange, is one such critic.
“Very Disappointing!!” wrote the 67-year-old fashion designer on Instagram, sharing a photo of the headline announcing his sentence.
She continued on by comparing his brief sentence for murder to that of her godson’s sentence for marijuana. “My Godson was sentenced to 20 years for 2 ounces of marijuana he has been In Jail for 11 years.
This man convicted of three charges He Murdered This man on TV before the world. And will only serve 15 ! The system has to change!” she finished.
“22 years? But he only has to do 15? Black people we got screwd again. Black people right now in jail for life, from nonviolent drug charges,” wrote one person in agreement in the comments, while another added, “I just know they didn’t expect us to jump for Joy or something.
Since when is a A human life is equivalent to 22 years ? This is a slap on the wrist compared to other charges.” Based on routine practices in the criminal justice system, since Chauvin is a first-time offender, he will serve at least 2/3 of his sentence before being eligible for parole–this translates to about 15 years behind bars, with the remaining time being under supervised release.
After he received his sentence, Chauvin offered condolences to Floyd’s loved ones. “I want to give my condolences to the Floyd family,” Chauvin said, addressing Floyd’s relatives. He cryptically added, “There’s going to be some other information in the future that would be of interest. And I hope things will give you some, some peace of mind. Thank you.”