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The murder trial for Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer charged in the death of George Floyd, is set to begin today.
In a video that ripped through social media like wildfire last May, Chauvin was seen pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck for nine minutes.
Police had responded to the scene at a convenience store after Floyd was accused of using counterfeit money to make a purchase.
The medical examiner ruled the death a homicide, though there was also a “pretty high” level of fentanyl in Floyd’s system at the time of death.
Still, the media sprung to action, crucifying the “racist” officers involved.
The incident was used as an excuse to justify and launch a series of violent riots across the country under the banner of social justice. For months, looting, vandalism and destruction took over major cities, with team-left calling to “defund the police.
Chauvin, 45, has been charged with second-degree unintentional murder, second-degree manslaughter and third-degree murder. If convicted, he could face a maximum of 40 years for second-degree murder, 25 years for third-degree murder and 10 years for manslaughter, ABC News reports.
He pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. The third-degree charge was dismissed in October, but was reinstated during the jury selection process.
A full jury was seated last week – 12 jurors and three alternates – after defense attorneys, prosecutors and the presiding judge spent 11 days questioning a pool of potential jurors.