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A judge has accepted Derek Chauvin’s plea deal, relieving him of life sentence

Derek Chauvin pleaded guilty to the murder of George Floyd in December. The judge has now accepted that plea.

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Former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin addresses the court as Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill presides over Chauvin’s sentencing at the Hennepin County Courthouse.

In this June 25, 2021, file image taken from pool video, former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin addresses the court as Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill presides over Chauvin’s sentencing at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis. On Wednesday, U.S. District Court Judge Paul Magnuson accepted Chauvin’s plea deal.

Pool Court TV, Associated Press

U.S. District Court Judge Paul Magnuson accepted former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin’s plea deal on Wednesday, sentencing him to 20 to 25 years in prison, according to NPR.

What does the plea deal mean for Chauvin? In December, Chauvin admitted in court that he violated George Floyd’s civil rights, after months of pleading not guilty to the crime, according to CNN.

  • The plea document states that Chauvin admitted his guilt, and that he “was aware that Mr. Floyd not only stopped resisting, but also stopped talking, stopped moving, stopped breathing, and lost consciousness and a pulse,” per The Associated Press.
  • In a response to the plea, Chauvin will not serve a life sentence. Prosecutors agreed that since he pleaded guilty to the charges, they will seek up to a 25-year prison sentence, The Associated Press reported.

How long will Chauvin really spend in prison? CBS Minnesota states that under good behavior, Chauvin could be done with the federal sentence within 17 to 21 years.

  • However, this plea deal only applies to his federal charge. Chauvin is also serving a 22.5 year sentence for his murder conviction under the Minnesota state court, which would run concurrently with his federal sentence. He is currently trying to appeal the Minnesota conviction, according to Axios.
  • He will serve his sentence in the federal prison system, which means he could go anywhere in the country. The judge may recommend a location, according to The Associated Press.
  • Magnuson has not yet set a sentencing date for Chauvin, CNN reported.