Derek Chauvin pleaded not guilty on all three murder and manslaughter charges during his trial for the killing of George Floyd.
The judicial trial of the case began in Hennepin County Government Center in downtown Minneapolis on March 29, 2021. Chauvin’s lead lawyer, Eric Nelson, summed up the case noting that Chauvin was only adhering to his 19 years of police training during the work, and Floyd’s death was due to a weak heart and his underlying drug use issues. The prosecution led by Steve Schleicher argued that Chauvin used excessive force in handling Floyd and termed it as a homicide. However, Chauvin pleaded not guilty to the charges and has invoked his fifth amendment right of not testifying himself.
After the closing arguments concluded, the 10-member jury announced the verdict, and Chauvin was found guilty of all three charges leveled against him. The verdict was welcomed by social activists and politicians alike. President Biden remarked, "the verdict was a step forward in the march towards justice in America."