Derek Chauvin, the former police officer seen on video pressing his knee to George Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, was found guilty of all counts he was charged with, including second-degree murder, on Tuesday.
Chauvin, who is white, was charged with second-degree and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, while in police custody.
Cell phone video of the incident went viral and touched off months of protests in the U.S. and abroad condemning police brutality and calling for racial justice. The widely watched trial, which began in March with jury selection, was livestreamed —Minnesota’s first criminal case to be televised.
Here’s what to know about the charges:
Guilty: Second-degree murder charge
Second-degree murder is causing the death of a human being, without intent to cause that death, while committing or attempting to commit another felony. In this case, the alleged felony was third-degree assault. Chauvin is charged with committing or intentionally aiding in the commission of this crime.
To convict Chauvin on this count, Judge Peter Cahill told jurors they must find that the former officer intended to commit an assault that could cause bodily harm or intentionally aided in committing such an assault.
“It is not necessary for the state to prove the defendant had an intent to kill Floyd. But it must prove that the defendant committed, or attempted to commit, the underlying felony,” the judge said.
Cahill added that the state must prove that the assault either inflicted bodily harm on Floyd or was intended to commit bodily harm. That essentially could include loss of consciousness, the judge said.
“It is not necessary for the state to prove that the defendant intended to inflict substantial bodily harm, or knew that his actions would inflict substantial bodily harm, only that the defendant intended to commit the assault, and George Floyd sustained substantial bodily harm,” Cahill said.
Guilty: Third-degree murder charge
Third-degree murder is unintentionally causing someone’s death by committing an act that is eminently dangerous to other persons while exhibiting a depraved mind, with reckless disregard for human life. Chauvin is accused of committing or intentionally aiding in the commission of this crime.
Under Minnesota law, an act that is eminently dangerous is one that “is highly likely to cause death,” Cahill told jurors. “The defendant’s act may not have been specifically intended to cause death,” and “it may not have been specifically directed at the person whose death occurred, but it must have been committed with a conscious indifference to the loss of life,” said the judge.
Cahill ruled last fall that this charge did not fit the Chauvin case because the statute required a showing of danger to other persons. However, a Minnesota appeals court in February upheld the third-degree murder conviction of former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor, who fatally shot Justine Ruszczyk Damond in 2017. Noor’s actions were focused solely on Damond.
During jury selection in the Chauvin trial, the appeals court ruled that Cahill should not have dismissed this charge. He subsequently reinstated the allegation. The Minnesota Supreme Court is scheduled to hear an appeal of the Noor decision in June.
Guilty: Second-degree manslaughter charge
Second-degree manslaughter is culpable negligence where a person creates an unreasonable risk and consciously takes the chance of causing death or great bodily harm to someone else. Chauvin is charged with committing or intentionally aiding in the commission of this crime.
“Culpable negligence is intentional conduct that the defendant may not have intended to be harmful, but that an ordinary and reasonably prudent person would recognize as having a strong probability of causing injury to others,” Cahill told jurors.
In summing up his legal instructions on the charges, Cahill told the jury there is no crime if a line of duty police officer uses reasonable force to make a lawful arrest. He instructed the jurors to consider the “totality of the facts and circumstances” in deciding whether Chauvin’s actions had been reasonable.
If convicted, Chauvin likely could face 12 1/2 years in prison under the state’s sentencing guidelines for first-time offenders. However, he could receive a longer or lesser term.
Prosecutors have asked the court for a sentence higher than the state guidelines based on alleged aggravating factors. If the judge agrees, that likely means Chauvin would face no more than double the sentencing guidelines.
Jurors will not be released from service after they deliver their verdict. Instead, they will be instructed to decide on aggravating factors alleged by the prosecution.
Trouble With Nigeria; Insecurity And The Crisis Of Leadership
Trouble With Nigeria; Insecurity And The Crisis Of Leadership—Similar to Chinua Achebe who in his booklet entitled; the Trouble With Nigeria, noted that the trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership, Raymond Anoliefo, Priest and Director, Justice Development and Peace Commission,(JDPC), Lagos, a social justice arm of the Catholic church that monitors social, economic, political and public leadership-related activities in the country, seemed to have made a comparable but prophetic statement on Saturday October 22, 2018, in Maryland, Lagos, during the celebration of the United Nations International Day of Peace, when he remarked that the greatest tragedy of our time without a shadow of the doubt is the fact that ours is a nation which is regrettably laden by poor leadership.
He also stated that our country Nigeria is a awash with captivating development visions, policies and plans, but impoverished leadership and corruption-induced failure of implementation of development projects on the part of the political leaders is responsible for the under-development in the country; noting that no nation best typifies a country in dire need of peace and social cohesion among her various sociopolitical groups than Nigeria as myriads of sociopolitical contradictions have conspired directly and indirectly to give the unenviable tag of a country in constant search of social harmony, justice, equity, equality, and peace.
looking at the happenings/occurrences in the country at the very moment orchestrated by leadership challenge he complained about four years ago, coupled with elite failure to speak up the truth and tell the truth to their communities, Anoliefo worries have become not just a word made flesh but a prophesy of foreknowledge and of denunciation. As we know, while prophecy of foreknowledge foretells what is certain to come, that of denunciation tells what is to come if the present situation is not changed; both acting as information and warning respectively.
Aside from the fact that his warnings was supported with mountains of evidence about how seriously off track the present administration in the country was taking the nation with their deformed policies, ill-conceived reforms and strategies, this piece believes that for reason, there is urgent need to further subject such thought shared by the cleric on that day, at that time and in that place, to a holistic analysis as it is laced with valid solutions that if implemented, holds the keys to re-engineering sustainable peace and development in the country.
Let’s begin with concern on insecurity in the country.
He captured it this way; The greatest and immediate danger to the survival of the Nigerian state today is the unwarranted, senseless, premeditate, well organized and orchestrated killings across the country-from Benue to the Plateau, Taraba to Zamfara, Enugu to Ebonyi, Kogi to Edo, Ekiti to Ondo, where Nigerians are cut down at will, babies ripped from their mothers’ wombs, houses destroyed and burnt down, particularly when all the time the killers are never apprehended, even when they make self implicating statements about such killings.
The country’s economy he added has shown its inability to sustain any kind of meaningful growth that promotes the social welfare of the people. The result can be seen in the grinding poverty in the land (eighty percent of Nigerians are living on less than two dollars per day – according) to the African Development Bank (AFDB) 2018 Nigeria Economic Outlook. Nigeria is ranked among the poorest countries in the world. Sadly, according to a report from Brookings Institute, Nigeria has already overtaken India as the country with the largest number of extremely poor in early 2018 in the world. At the end of May 2018, Brookings institute’s trajectories suggest that Nigeria had about 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared with India’s 73 million. What is more, extreme poverty in Nigeria is growing by six people every minute.
In Education, 10.5 million children are out of school in Nigeria, the highest in the world. Our industries continue to bear the brunt of a negative economic environment. As a result, job losses and unemployment continue to skyrocket, creating a serious case of social dislocation for the vast majority of our people.
The running of our country’s economy continues to go against the provisions of our constitution which stipulates forcefully that the commanding heights of the economy must not be concentrated in the hands of few people. The continous takeover of national assets through dubious (privatization) programs by politicians and their collaborators is deplorable and clearly against the people of Nigeria. The attempt to disengage governance from public sector control of the economy has only played into the hands of private profiteers of goods and services to the detriment of the Nigerian people.
On social issues, lets listen to him; Life in Nigeria, quoting Thomas hobbs, has become nasty, brutish, and short. Nigerians have never had it so bad. Indeed, while Nigerians diminish socially and economically, the privileged political class continues to flourish in obscene splendor as they pillage and ravage the resources of our country at will. This malfeasance at all levels of governance has led to the destruction of social infrastructure relevant to a meaningful and acceptable level of social existence for our people. Adequate investment in this area, it has been shown, is clearly not the priority of those in power.
As a result, our hospitals whether state owned or federal owned have become veritable death centers where people go to die rather than to be healed. The absence of basic items such as hand gloves and masks are indicative of the level of decadence and rot in the country’s health National Budget recommended by the United Nations.
With regards to the criminal justice system, our people, especially the poor and vulnerable continue to suffer unprecedented acts of intimidation and violation of rights at the hands of security agencies across the country. Extra judicial killings, lack of scientific based investigation of crimes and corruption in the judiciary contribute to acts of injustice against the innocent. Our prisons have become places where prisoners are hardened rather than places of reformation of prisoners for reintegration back into the society
Also, Nigerian workers have faced unprecedented hardship over the years as governments across the nation continue to deprive them of legitimately earned salaries and pensions. It is quite unfortunate that as a Nation we are still debating minimum wage, and not even living wage, especially in a country where every commodity has skyrocketed save the monthly take home of workers. And we supposedly have “leaders” who claim to have the interest of the masses at heart. Tell me another lie!!!
As to solution to these challenges, the cleric succulently puts it this way; surely, leadership holds the key to unlocking the transformation question in Nigeria, but to sustain these drive leaders must carry certain genes and attributes that are representative of this order. The JDPC therefore believes that only a sincere and selfless leader and a politically and economically restructured polity brought about by national consensus can unleash the social and economic forces that can ensure the total transformation of the country and propel her to true greatness. This will help to ensure that there is provision of adequate social infrastructure such as genuine poverty alleviation programmes and policies, healthcare, education, job provision, massive industrialization, electricity provision to mention a few. It is critical to jettison this present socio-economic system that has bred corruption, inefficiency, primitive capital accumulation and socially excluded the vast majority of our people. The only way this can be done is to work to build a new social and political order that can mobilize the people around common interests, with visionary leadership to drive this venture. Only then can we truly begin to resolve some of the socio-economic contradictions afflicting the nation. This is the pathway to true, genuine and lasting peace.
For me as the author of this piece, I have nothing new to add as the man of God has said it all!!!
Utomi Jerome-Mario is the Programme Coordinator (Media and Policy), Social and Economic Justice Advocacy (SEJA), Lagos. He could be reached via;j[email protected]/
Shina Peller At 45, The Best Is Yet To Come For The Youths In Nigerian Politics – Governor Fayemi
The governor of ekiti state who also is the chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum, Dr Kayode Fayemi has given a brighter hope to the political career of youths in the country.
Governor Fayemi who spoke as the chairman of the National Security Symposium organized by Lead Generation Initiative (LGI) in honor of Honorable Shina Peller, lawmaker representing iseyin, Iwajowa, kajola and itesiwaju federal constituency to commemorate his 45th birthday in Ibadan his home state, said the best is yet to come for Nigerian youths while encouraged them to be less of social media warriors and take active participation in politics as the future of the country’s fortune belongs to them.
The governor while using the celebrant honorable Shina Peller as worthy example of youths in politics, eulogized the great feats of the lawmaker as a first term legislator and among the youngest and newest politicians in the country. It would be recall that in the build up to the Nation Security symposium, the lawmaker had a busy week of constituency activities which include: donation of medical equipments and ambulances to healthcare centers in his constituent, conducting free eye tests for the elderly and youths while gave them free eye glasses.
The lawmaker also had a special day to share valuables and dine with students of Iseyin School for The Handicaps iseyin Oyo State, an activity which has become traditional with his birthday celebrations in years past.
Speaking further at the symposium entitled “National Security and Peace: Role of Government, Citizens and Institutions, Governor Fayemi louded the lawmaker for making the worsening security situation in the country his topmost priority and a matter of urgent concern in his heart.
The Governor said “We are all here because we believe in a cause we need to commit ourselves.
At the moment, we know our country is going through a lot of challenges. But these challenges are not insurmountable. These are challenges we can overcome”. He said further ” when you see what my brother Shina Peller has done today by bringing us together to talk about the security challenges the country is passing through, you will see that he has done well.
Shina particularly has done well in iseyin and other constituents he represents in terms of poverty eradication, in area of community development, in terms of bridging the gap between the privileged and non privileged in his community”.
It would also be recalled that the National security symposium was planned to be the biggest security and peace meeting and it brought together Governors of different States of the federation, security professionals, traditional rulers, professors, citizens and concerned stakeholders.
Speaking further about the opportunity the youths have to brighten the fortune of the country by participating in politics, governor Fayemi said further about the youthful Honorable Shina Peller that “you know politicians bring people together like this, Shina has not told me what steps he wants to take next, but i can assure you that he doesn’t just want to stay in the House of Representatives, am sure he has idea of effecting the lives of people much more than he has done currently.
Whatever it is that he chooses to do after haven delivered proudly and competently in the current position that he holds, i have no doubt that many of our leaders will support him as long as he remains stable minded about making a deferent in the lives of our people whenever he finds himself. Fayemi concluded that the lawmaker is a source of pride for all youths and elderly alike.
He said ” for as long as he continues to dedicate his political life to the larger usefulness of the people, particularly the people he represents and the good people of Oyo state and Nigeria, i want to let him know that the sky is not even the limit, he would go far and beyond his own expectations as he could be a source of pride for all of us”.
Some of the stakeholders that participated in the security symposium are guest speaker and immediate past speaker, House of Representatives, Rt Hon Yakubu Dogora, Professor Isaac Olawale Albert, Keynote Speaker, Dr Nathaniel Danjibo, President Society for Peace Studies and Practice, Chief Tunji Alapini, Retired Assistant Inspector General of Police, Prof Temisaren Ebijuwa, General Studies Department, LAUTECH Ogbomoso among others.
The Symposium which had Ambassador Ibrahim Agboola Gambari, Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari as a special guest participant, also had Alaafin of Oyo His Imperial Majesty, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi iii and His Imperial Majesty Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi as Royal Fathers of the day.
State governors that participated in the Symposium include Governor Olusola Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, Governor Abubakar Sank Bello of Niger State, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State, Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State, while the chief host was Engineer Seyi Makinde, Executive Governor of Oyo State.
Why Men Must Stop Marrying And Dating Hungry Girls – Blessing Okoro Reveals
Why Men Must Stop Marrying And Dating Hungry Girls – Blessing Okoro Reveals—The Genius Media Nigeria reports that Nigerian relationship therapist, Blessing Okoro has advised men against dating hungry girls and women.
This was made known by the controversial relationship coach in a recent post she made on her verified Instagram page.
According to her, money can’t keep marriage and she used the fact that world billionaires like Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk are all divorced to buttress her point.
The post she made reads;
“Money can’t keep marriage…
Men stop marrying and dating hungry girls and women 😂…..”
- Trouble With Nigeria; Insecurity And The Crisis Of Leadership
- Shina Peller At 45, The Best Is Yet To Come For The Youths In Nigerian Politics – Governor Fayemi
- Watch As Sunday Igboho Escaped Another DSS Attack In Osun
- Fayemi, Sanwo-Olu, Amosun And Others Celebrate Shina Peller As Exemplary Leader At 45 [PHOTOS]
- Why Men Must Stop Marrying And Dating Hungry Girls – Blessing Okoro Reveals
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