Derek Chauvin Is Guilty. The Fight for Real Justice Is Far From Over.


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Late Tuesday afternoon, the jury in the trial of Derek Chauvin delivered its verdict: guilty on all three counts in the killing of George Floyd. The 12 jurors—six of whom are white, four Black, and two multiracial—heard three weeks of testimony and deliberated for about 10 hours. Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer, was charged with second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter.

The verdict comes just less than a year since Chauvin forcibly kneeled on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes and 29 seconds, ultimately suffocating and killing him. Floyd was 46 years old. The video was shared widely and sparked massive waves of protests last summer under the banner “Black Lives Matter”—first in Minneapolis and then across the United States, people took to the streets to demonstrate against police violence and demand racial justice. Chauvin was fired and arrested after killing Floyd. He had worked for the Minneapolis Police Department since 2001, during which time he received at least 17 complaints and had a record of fatal use-of-force.

Nathalie, who closely followed the trial over the past few weeks, joined Mother Jones Podcast host Jamilah King just after the verdict came in. "I was really surprised by how quickly the verdict came back," said Nathalie. "It feels like a huge moment." In her analysis of this important moment, Nathalie touched on the barely latent racism in the prosecutor’s argument, the issues with a televised trial, and how this verdict fits into the long fight for racial justice in America.”A lot of people are eager to hold this guilty verdict up as this big symbol of change,” says Nathalie on the podcast. “But after so many viral police shootings, one guilty verdict doesn’t satisfy that appetite for actual change.”