A Perspective From The Twin Cities - GUILTY: What The Chauvin Verdict Means

Editor's note: This guest column was submitted by Andres Boland. Andres, a former writer for RTF's previous iteration, The People's View, is a Minnesota native and excels in issues of national importance with a local focus.

A protester holds a George Floyd sign outside the Hennepin County Courthouse in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota

Derek Chauvin has been convicted on all three charges: unintentional second degree murder, third degree murder, and second degree manslaughter.

This is a just outcome for a murder that has brought so much pain to the Twin Cities, my home. A murder at the hands of someone sworn to protect everyone, not just those with white skin.

What All This Means

At this point, Derek Chauvin is just roadkill. His life (it appears) is effectively over. The judge revoked his bail.

The Twin Cities will have some peace after a very tense and scary time.

This verdict will provide some relief to the Floyd family, but it does not change the fact that a family member was stripped of his rights, dignity, humanity, and ultimately his life on a street corner in south Minneapolis.

Moreover, officers like Chauvin, officers who treat their badge as a license to bully, assault and kill anyone they please (mainly Black people) are still way too common. Especially inside the Minneapolis Police Department.

What is worse, the systems that allowed Chauvin to believe he could get away with brutalizing so many people for so long using his police badge as cover in Minneapolis and Minnesota for that matter are still in place.

The work to make the legal system work for everyone must continue.

Especially in the Twin Cities.

Daunte Wright should still be with us. What would be a routine traffic stop for me as a White man turned out to be a death sentence for him as a young Black man.

I love the Twin Cities, but the fact remains that even with this conviction, there is still so much work left to do.

Whom We Have to Thank

It was a team effort to get this verdict.

I would like to thank my Attorney General, Keith Ellison and his team for prosecuting this case and successfully securing a guilty verdict on all three counts.

Also deserving of acknowledgement is my Mayor, Mayor Melvin Carter III. He held Saint Paul together during some of it's darkest times. Not only through COVID-19, but also this murder.

Minneapolis Chief of Police Medaria Arradondo not only helped convict one of his own officers, but currently works night and day to fix the Minneapolis Police Department. My respect for him has only grown. Thank you to the nine officers from the MPD who testified to prove to the jury that Chauvin did not act in a reasonable manner.

To pathologists who lent their expertise to show that Chauvin’s knee snuffed the life out of Mr. Floyd, thank you.

Most of all, I would like to thank Darnella Fraizer and all of the witnesses for catching the atrocity Chauvin committed on tape. Also, I am sorry you had to see such a vicious crime.

To the Floyd family, I am sorry that one of your beloved members was stolen from you in such a vicious manner. I hope this guilty verdict has brought you some semblance of justice and closure.

Stay safe, everyone.

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