1. billseymour says

    I’m surprised.  The guilt was obvious right from the beginning, but the verdict wasn’t.

    Will this be the start of something good?  I hope so.  We’ll see…

  2. says

    What it took to convict Chauvin strikes me as such an absurdly high burden of evidence, it is difficult to foresee whether it will have a significant chilling effect on police behavior, or a marginal one as cops ensure their murderous acts are not captured with video and audio and with so many witnesses. The crumbling of the Blue Wall is hard to measure as a factor in the verdict, but it is an exceedingly rare anomaly. It makes me curious whether Chauvin was liked and respected by his colleagues, or they thought him to be an insufferable asshole and were motivated to be rid of him.

  3. blf says

    @3, “It makes me curious whether Chauvin was liked and respected by his colleagues, or they thought him to be an insufferable asshole and were motivated to be rid of him.”

    One hypothesis (from a column in the Grauniad as I now recall) is part of the reason the Police Chief testified for the prosecution is he didn’t want the defense’s claim the murderer was following the department’s training and standard practice to “gain traction”. That does not mean, and please don’t read it this way, that the department does train or condone the murderer’s tactic — but it also does not eliminate (rule out) the possibly (albeit then Chief may have then committed perjury?).

    I(We?) don’t know, but if I were to guess, it’d probably be the murderer was following what he thought he was, and possibly was, trained to do, but took it to an extreme far beyond his (possibly imagined) training. A variant of this is he had some private additional training where it is known some instructors do teach similar tactics. (This private additional training scam is a whole different Can’o’Worms.)

    It should be noted, that to his credit, the Chief, Medaria Arradondo, did fire all four within days (i.e., not too long after the infamous video was uploaded by that brave teenager, Darnella Frazier,† who filmed it). Two of those four were rookies (one had only been on the force(? patrolling?) for something like three days), so it seems plausible not all four were fired because they were “insufferable asshole[s]”, albeit the murderer and / or the other long-serving goon might have been (I too have wondered about this).

      † Normally I wouldn’t name a teenager or child, but both Ms Frazier and her younger cousin, Judeah Reynolds, testified at the trial and have been named in the reputable / reliable press. Both deserve lots of credit & congratulations. One example, the Grauniad’s Girl, 10, who witnessed George Floyd murder ‘proud’ after guilty verdict. One snippet from that article:

    Frazier’s video would probably never have been captured were it not for Judeah, who insisted on going to the Minneapolis corner market, Cup Foods, for some candy that evening.

    “She’s been a history-changer. Her persistence about asking to go to the store that day has changed policing in America,” said LaToya Turk, Judeah’s family friend and advocate.

  4. blf says

    The murderer apparently does have a reputation for violence / aggression, 18 complaints in 19 years, and a murder conviction: What we know about ex-Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin:

    Derek Chauvin was a 19-year veteran of the Minneapolis Police Department who left behind a trail of misconduct complaints and a reputation for aggression, according to police records and those who knew him.

    [… grew up and worked in overwhelmingly white areas, and did not live in Minneapolis…]

    Chauvin’s record as a police officer in Minneapolis was littered with allegations of misconduct and excessive force. Eighteen complaints were filed against him over his 19-year career […]

    Only two of those complaints were closed with discipline. [… details murky…]
    The other 16 complaints against Chauvin were closed without discipline. The Minneapolis Police Department hasn’t released any details about the complaints or why they were closed.


    Chauvin’s combative reputation wasn’t limited to his policing career. Maya Santamaria, the former owner of El Nuevo Rodeo, the Latin nightclub where Chauvin worked, told BuzzFeed News that Chauvin “was nice, but he would overreact and lash out quickly.”

    Santamaria said she noticed that Chauvin’s demeanor would change during special events for Black communities. She added that she had reprimanded him before when he used pepper spray on patrons.

    “His face, attitude, posture would change when we did urban nights,” she said.


    Also see Officer charged in George Floyd’s death used fatal force before and had history of complaints (May-2020), which also quotes the nightclub owner:

    Recently, there was tension in the precinct where the club was located, Santamaria said, especially when the club started catering to the African American community.

    “I could feel the racial tension,” she said. “I could feel the racism. The cops, the 3rd Precinct, even the Minneapolis licensing inspectors. They were hating on me for bringing that element into the neighborhood.”

    Neither cited article seems to discuss how the other goons felt about the murderer (i.e., whether or not he was “an insufferable asshole”).