Derrek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis, Minnesota police officer convicted for the second-degree murder of George Floyd is pleading again for an early release from prison. The disgraced officer was sentenced to 22.5 years in prison for the crime.
Chauvin who pressed his knee into George Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes as the unarmed man lay handcuffed and prone on the street pavement, ignored Floyd’s pleas for relief, telling the officer he couldn’t breathe and calling out to his mother, saying, “Mama. they killin’ me. they killin me,” before he died. He was 46.
Floyd’s death at the hands of police officers during the Memorial Day weekend in 2020 sparked national outrage and protests for police reform all over the country.
Chauvin has expressed extreme trepidation over being incarcerated and recently launched his third appeal for a new trial and to be released from prison.
On Wednesday (May 17), Chauvin’s lawyer, William Mohrman, filed a petition for a review of the ex-officer’s second-degree murder conviction, per Fox News.
Mohrman previously, and unsuccessfully, asked the Minnesota Court of Appeals to throw out Chauvin’s conviction, arguing that his client didn’t receive a fair trial due to a myriad of reasons including pretrial publicity.
“We’re very hopeful that the Minnesota Supreme Court will accept review of the case,” the ex-cop’s lawyer William Mohrman told The Associated Press.
Reports later revealed that Chauvin who had been on the force for 19 years at the time of the Floyd killing had a history of using the brutal and dangerous technique on Black citizens of Minneapolis, along with a number of citizen complaints and had previously been involved in a fatal police shooting.
Video of the horrific incident with viral and people the world over rose up and shock and dismay to stop the abuse of Black citizens at the hands of law enforcement officers.
The Floyd family attorney Lee Merritt said, “Chauvin’s ill-fated appeal will ultimately fail under the current legal standards for overturning a conviction by a jury.”
“His attorneys are arguing that a change of venue should have been granted. However, a neutral judge certified a fair jury panel that reached a decision based on the evidence,” Merritt said. “It is highly unlikely that an appellate court will overturn a qualified jury without more.”
And while calls for police reform and defunding the police have resounded continuously, the George Floyd Justice and Policing Act has been stalled in the Senate for the past three years.