A former cop Derek Chauvin appeared in court on 8th June for the first time after choking George Floyd to death. He pressurized Floyd’s neck for approximately 9 minutes. He was later charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter which means he could be sentenced up to 40 years in prison. It is criticized that it will difficult to detain
His account was corrected recently after previous charges were heavily criticized by the public for not being severe as his crime. The murder caused mass protests in America which carried on for 2 weeks, demanding the police brutality and racism to end.
What Happened In The Hearing Of Derek Chauvin
He appeared from the state prison via video. Reportedly, Chauvin was mostly silent during the hearing. His bail was set at 1Million USD with conditions and $1.25M without conditions; due to the gravity of the charges and strength of public opinion. Bail conditions included surrendering of all firearms, no more work in law enforcement or any kind of security, no contact with the victim’s family, and not leaving the state without permission.
There were no objections from the legal council of Derek Chauvin. Prosecutor argued that Chauvin may flee if set free because the case is high profile and a lot of people want to see him gone. He will remain in detention at Oak Park Heights prison in Minnesota and will reappear on June 29.
Three other officers who were involved in Floyd’s death have been charged with aiding and abetting accordingly.
What Did The Mass US Protests Achieve?
With the help of this case and protests, American states are taking reformatory measures concerning police discipline.
Minneapolis dismantled its police in the wake of serious pressure from the protestors. In this video Mayor Jacob Frey first struggled to agree with complete disbandment of the police.
90 council members decided to immediately disband the police and committed to engage with community members till next year and identify what safety means for everyone.
In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced defunding of the NYPD and facilitating other sectors of the city’s budget; mainly youth and social services. According to reports, the current NYPD Budget is 6Billion USD which is more than homeless services (2.1 Billion USD), health (1.9 Billion USD), small business services (293000 USD), and youth and community development (872,000) combined. He also announced to revoke Section 50-A which will make personal records of the policemen transparent. Currently, people cannot access to see if any police officer has a disciplinary history.
Mayor of Seattle, Jenny Durkan announced that she will review the SPD’s budget while taking the public concerns in account. She will make both short and long term changes to the city’s police along with establishment and financing of the Seattle Black Commission. 100 MIllion USD will be invested in community-driven programs for young and adult black citizens.
She also appointed an independent prosecutor for rogue police officers like Derek Chauvin and advised appropriate procedures for mass protests.
The Davis PD chief admitted that police tactics have been questionable in the US that’s why they need to be thoroughly reformed. The department announced to abandon and ban the use of chokeholds on suspects. Moreover, they added a law that requires a police officer to intervene when a fellow officer is using excessive force.
The department is confident that more reforms will be applied in the coming days.
New Jersey State Police also announced to ban chokeholds, neck restraints or similar tactics. The attorney general ordered that this tactic has led to several cases of asphyxiation in the US especially against people of color. If officers use this tactic any longer, they will be dealt with criminal charges. The order provides exemption in life threatening situations.
Statues Taken Down Across The US
Americans have also decided to destroy confederate statues like protesters did in the UK. US Protestors used ropes to tear down the statues of infamous confederate generals Williams Carter Wickham and Robert E Lee. City council removed the 120 year old monument of Confederate Admiral Raphael Semmes in Mobile, Alabama.