Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis police officer seen kneeling on George Floyd's neck until he could not breathe, has been charged with 3rd degree murder and manslaughter, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Friday afternoon. His wife, Kellie Chauvin, said she is filing for divorce after 10 years of marriage.
Hennepin County Attorney Freeman said on Friday that the evidence against Chauvin includes video from a bystander's cell phone, body camera footage as well as statements from witnesses and a preliminary report from the medical examiner.
"We felt in our professional judgment that it was time to charge and we have so done it," Freeman said.
If convicted of the state charges, Chauvin could face up to 25 years in prison on the third-degree murder charge and up to 10 years in prison on the second-degree manslaughter charge.
He is expecting more charges to be added to against the other officers involved in the incident but did not go into detail.
However, Freeman raised concerns over how fast the arrest had been made against Chauvin.
"This is by far the fastest we have ever charged a police officer," he said. "Normally these cases take nine months to a year. We have to charge these cases very carefully because we have a difficult burden of proof."
On Memorial Day, Derek Chauvin was seen on a bystander's video pinning Floyd to the ground with his knee to Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes.
Minneapolis Police kill a black man on 38th and Chicago.
He is screaming, "I can't breathe" as police drive their knee on his throat for over three minutes. pic.twitter.com/1hhBLAqy8K
- Keaon Dousti کیان (@KeaonDousti) May 26, 2020
George Floyd, 46, died in police custody Monday night. He had been arrested after an employee at a grocery store called police to accuse Floyd of trying to pass a counterfeit $20 bill. He is seen handcuffed and lying face-down while he pleads: "Please, I can't breathe." He was later pronounced dead at a hospital.
Meanwhile, In a statement issued by her attorney, Kellie Chauvin said she is devastated by the killing of 46-year-old George Floyd, who died earlier this week while in police custody.
Kellie Chauvin's attorney said she filed for divorce as a result of this week's incident. "This evening, I spoke with Kellie Chauvin and her family. She is devastated by Mr. Floyd's death and her utmost sympathy lies with his family, with his loved ones and with everyone who is grieving this tragedy. She has filed for dissolution of her marriage to Derek Chauvin," Kellie Chauvin's attorneys said.
"While Ms. Chauvin has no children from her current marriage, she respectfully requests that her children, her elder parents, and her extended family be given safety and privacy during this difficult time."