Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin has filed an appeal, asking the state Court of Appeals to overturn his conviction for killing George Floyd in 2020, according to CNN. Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, and was sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison by Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill back in June, NPR reports.
An 82-page brief filed on Monday alleged that several factors during the case corrupted proceedings and made them “structurally defective,” CNN reports. One of the factors also noted was the pretrial publicity, protests outside the courthouse and the announcement during jury selection that Floyd’s family would receive a $27 million settlement. It continued, describing the court proceedings as “so pervaded by error, misconduct and prejudice that they were structurally defective.”
Chauvin and his attorney William Mohrman are also asking the appeals court to determine if the venue should have been changed, the jury isolated, or the trial held at a later date because of media coverage and protests.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison’s deputy chief of staff, John Stiles, told CNN that prosecutors intend to “save our comment for our reply in court to Mr. Chauvin’s appeal.”
Chauvin and his attorney are asking for one of three outcomes: dismiss his conviction and bring his case back to Hennepin County, reverse the outcomes and request a new trial in a new venue or give the former officer a lesser punishment within the state’s guidelines.
When the former officer was sentenced, Cahill said he decided to give Chauvin a longer sentence because he “abused his position of trust and authority” by treating Floyd “without respect and denied him the dignity owed to all human beings,” according to CNN.
An investigation into the Minnesota Police Department showed that Chauvin’s actions might reflect a deeper issue within the department. According to NPR, a few days after the brief was submitted, the state of Minnesota issued a report that found the department had a “pattern or practice of race discrimination in violation of the Minnesota Human Rights Act.”