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Here’s how long Derek Chauvin could spend in prison

The former police officer faces up to 40 years in prison.

Derek Chauvin’s conviction on all three charges stemming from the May 25, 2020, death of George Floyd could lead to a sentence that lasts decades — and to another court battle.

Chauvin will learn his fate in eight weeks, when Judge Peter Cahill hands down punishment to the former police officer who was found guilty on Tuesday of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

PHOTO: Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill speaks at during the verdict announcement in the trial of Derek Chauvin at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, April 20 2021.

Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill speaks at during the verdict announcement in the trial of Derek Chauvin at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, April 20 2021.

Under Minnesota sentencing guidelines, for a person with no criminal history, each murder charge carries a presumptive sentence of 12 1/2 years, while a manslaughter conviction has a presumptive sentence of four years.

But each count carries a different maximum sentence — 40 years for second-degree unintentional murder, 25 years for third-degree murder, 10 years for second-degree manslaughter.

Abrams predicted that the prosecution will ask the judge to sentence Chauvin to more years in prison.

Chauvin will be sentenced on the second-degree murder because, per state law, it’s the single most serious charge. Although sentencing guidelines suggest it’s more likely he could get closer to 15 years, prosecutors likely will argue otherwise, citing aggravating factors — minors at the scene watched Floyd die, in one example — that could push 15 years closer to 40.

“That is the next big debate in the case, over exactly what should be the sentence for Derek Chauvin,” said ABC News Legal Analyst Dan Abrams, who said he expects the prosecution to push for a longer sentence.

Chauvin was remanded into custody following the jury verdict. During the end of closing arguments, the former officer waived his right to have a jury decide his sentencing. Cahill alone will decide.


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