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tv   Minnesota Attorney General Reacts to Derek Chauvin Sentencing  CSPAN  June 25, 2021 5:26pm-5:40pm EDT

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>> if this need to be said, we just ask that it be executed forthwith. >> remanded to the custody of the sheriff to be transported back to the d.o.c. or whichever custody is currently holding him. anything from the defense? >> no, your honor. >> all right. thank you, we are adjourned. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2021] >> after the sentencing, minnesota attorney general keith ellison delivered a brief statement.
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atty. gen. ellison: hello, everyone. my name is keith ellison. i'm the attorney general for the state of minnesota. and on behalf of the prosecution team, we want to thank the floyd family, brandon williams, terrence floyd -- philoniese floyd, and gigi, who gave their testimony to the court and gave their heart-felt feelings about the impact of this horrific crime on their family. we heard for the first time from george floyd's 6-year-old daughter. what a delightful, beautiful child. and my heart to the entire floyd family as they explain to her what happened to him when she
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grows up. 270 months, 22 1/2 years, is one of the longest a former police officer has ever received for an unlawful use of deadly force. like the conviction of derek chauvin two months ago, today's sentencing is not justice, but it is another moment of real accountability on the road to justice. it's difficult to see anyone lose their freedom, but seeing somebody lose their life through torture over 9 1/2 minutes is incomparably worse. those minutes seconds, are seared into the minds of people across the world who watched george floyd died. above all, the heroic people who stopped and bore witness to george floyd's suffering and torture, and came forward a year
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later to testify about what they saw and to the flood family members themselves and their counsel, ben crump, tony, we say thank you. the lives of everyone who saw what happened to george floyd are forever changed. my hope for derek chauvin is that he uses his long sentence to reflect on the choices that he made on may 25, 2020. my hope is that he will find it within himself to acknowledge the impact of his choices on george floyd, his family, his fellow police officers, and the world. my hope is that he takes the time to learn something about the man whose life he took and about the movement that rose up to call for justice in the wake of george floyd's torture and death. today is also an important
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moment for our country. the outcome of this case is critically important, but by itself, it's not enough. my hope for our country is that this moment gives us pause and allows us to rededicate ourselves to the real societal change that will move us much further along the road to justice. i'm not talking about the kind of change that takes decades. i'm talking about real change, concrete change that real people can do now. i'm talking to lawmakers. if this is a historic moment, there's so much legislation around the country. in city councils, county boards, state legislatures and congress that is still waiting to be passed. if these bills were passed, they would make the deaths at the hands of law enforcement officers less likely, would improve police community relations, would restore trust
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and, therefore, cooperation, improve the lives of officers who want to protect and serve and make everyone safer. every one of these bills at every level of government is critical for helping our families, our law enforcement officers, communities, and the country heal. above all, congress has still not passed the george floyd justice in policing act. i call on leaders and members of congress to pass the best and strongest version of this bill that can be passed and to pass it now. president biden called on the congress to pass this bill. it must be passed. lives are depending upon it. it's just that simple. i'm speaking now to law enforcement leaders. at this historic moment, law enforcement leaders are finally in a place to put in place policy, training, mechanisms, and accountability that can
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build the police department the people can really trust and rely on. and the elected leaders that they answer to must support and empower these law enforcement leaders to do it. where there is distrust between community and police, there's less cooperation between community and police. and at a moment where violent crime is spiking across the nation in major cities, we simply cannot afford the distrust, the system leaves us all a little less safe. but trust and cooperation must be earned. you cannot clean a dirty wound. by bringing accountability in law enforcement, you actually promote public safety. i say to those law enforcement leaders, make no mistake, this is something your officers are asking for. in the aftermath of george floyd's death, 14 minneapolis
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police department officers signed an open letter condemning derek chauvin's actions and embracing the call for reform and change. these 14 officers don't only speak for themselves, they speak for hundreds across the country. these officers and ones like them want you to support officers who treat everyone with dignity and respect. they want you to support officers who are taking risk to speak up and demand that we do better. they want you to hold their colleagues accountable who refuse to serve communities with dignity and respect. why do officers want accountability? well, think of the 9-year-old girl wearing a t-shird that said -- t-shirt that said love across the front, witnessed george floyd's murder, and how she will feel 20 years from now as she may be speaking to her own children whether or not to trust law enforcement.
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this is undermining the ability for people to trust and that is very tragic. it's not fair to judge all police officers by derek chauvin's actions but some people will inevitably will generalize unless there is true accountability. you just can't heal a dirty wound. and when there's little trust, sadly, there's little safety. when law enforcement leaders take steps to prioritize wellness for their officers, they'll have their officers' respect, trust between officers and the people they are dedicated to protecting and serving. let me speak to prosecutors. we believe and we state and declare that no one is above the law and no one is beneath it. a police officer is not above the law and george floyd is certainly not beneath the law. when after a thorough review, prosecutors believe they have probable cause that anyone,
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including someone operating with the authority of law and law enforcement has violated the law, our prosecutors must be vigorous, visible, and swift. i'm speaking to community now. we need every community member to continue to call for real reform and meaningful change. peacefully, constructively, but clearly. this is a moment for change, and your call for it is making it happen. this means everyone who wants to live in a society with dignity and respect as core values, everyone that wants to be safe in their homes and on the street, everyone who wants to get the help that they need, everyone who wants their love ones to get home safely, this is what we need to do. what will happen if we don't do it? we'll slip deeper into a century-long cycle of inaction. we can and we must make another choice. the choice to break the old
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paradigm and end the cycle of inaction. the choice to act for accountability and justice. the choice to transform ourselves and our country. for the sake of all the lives that have been lost, for the sake of the terrible sacrifices that too many families, like the floyds, have had to make, and for the make of the many officers who strive and protect with dignity and honor and high standards and for the sake of the community, time is of -- it's time to act. we're counting on you. we're counting on each other. finally, i want to thank this extraordinary team of prosecutors. it has been my deepest honor to work with you. you all are the best, and i'm honored to be your colleague. i want to send another strong signal of love and friendship to the floyd family who have done so much to uphold the dignity of our community. i want to thank th hennepin
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county attorneys office who have done such a good job and we appreciate their work. and i want to thank the witnesses who courageously stepped forward for george floyd on may 25 to at risk to themselves and came back a year later to testify about what they saw. and lastly, i want to thank the community for making the call for justice. that's it. thank you very much. >> today, former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin was sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison for the 2020 murder of george floyd.
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