Derek Chauvin made an offer on Wednesday to limit his prison sentence to the time he served and serve the remainder of a sentence with probation. Chauvin is pictured on a mugshot taken after he arrived at MCF – Oak Park
Derek Chauvin has made an offer to limit his prison sentence to the time he has served and serve the rest of each sentence with probation, DailyMail.com has learned.
Chauvin’s attorney Eric Nelson filed a motion in Hennepin County district court on Wednesday asking Judge Peter Cahill to rule on lenient terms when he charges Chauvin on June 25.
In the document seen by DailyMail.com, Nelson argued that Chauvin deserves probation or “downward derogation” from the suspected jail term he could face for the murder of George Floyd, 46.
Nelson claimed Chauvin made only a “mistake” when he pressed his knee to Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes during a May 2020 arrest – saying his client did not believe his actions were criminal.
Just moments after Chauvin’s attorney filed his request, the state hit back and filed one of them, asking the judge to issue the maximum jail term and incarcerate Chauvin for 30 years.
Attorney General Keith Ellison reminded the judge that he had already identified four aggravating factors: the defendant abused a position of trust and authority, acted particularly cruel, acted in concert with three other individuals who were all actively participating in the crime and committed the offense in front of children.
According to Ellison, Chauvin’s act was not only an abuse of his position, but an “outrageous abuse” and also “extremely cruel”. Floyd begged for his life, he noted, and “was clearly terrified by the knowledge that he was likely to die.”
In light of this, Ellison argued, the court should “order a sentence that is “twice the upper limit of the probable sentence.”
In a motion calling for a lenient sentence, Chauvin’s lawyer described his fatal stranglehold on George Floyd (pictured) as a “mistake”
As it stands, Chauvin, 45, could face more than 15 years in prison for the second-degree murder conviction. The presumptive sentence in Minnesota is 12 and a half years.
But Judge Cahill has already found the benefit of all four aggravating factors put forward by the prosecution in their attempt to effect an “upward departure” in sentencing.
Now Nelson has argued that Chauvin is “the product of a broken system” and should therefore be leniently condemned.
Chauvin is held in solitary confinement in the maximum security facility of Oak Park Heights.
In his motion, Nelson pointed to this as evidence of security concerns and evidence that “offenses committed by officers significantly increase his chances of becoming a target in prison.”
According to Nelson, Chauvin is “not the average perpetrator.” He stated, “Prior to this incident, Mr. Chauvin led a hard-working, law-abiding life and had no legal problems.”
His criminal record score on his Pre Sentence Investigation was zero.
More so, he has claimed that Chauvin “didn’t even know he was committing a crime.”
Nelson wrote: ‘In his mind he was simply fulfilling his lawful duty by assisting other officers in George Floyd’s arrest. Mr. Chauvin is not a typical case where one person commits an attack that results in the death of another.
“As evidenced by Mr. Chauvin’s actions if he had believed he was committing a crime, as a licensed police officer, Mr. Chauvin simply would not have done so.”
Chauvin is held in solitary confinement in Oak Park Heights maximum security facility (pictured)
In a provocative move, Nelson sought to minimize the crime for which Chauvin was convicted, saying, “Mr. Chauvin’s offense is best described as a mistake made in good faith, relying on his own [sic] experience as a police officer and the training he has received – not intentionally committing an illegal act.’
He later noted that the court ruled that Floyd was “not a particularly vulnerable victim,” describing the 9 minutes and 29 seconds in which Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck as “a very short time,” which “involved no threats or taunts.” like putting a gun to his head and pulling the trigger and ended when EMS finally responded to the calls from officers.”
In the eyes of the public, Nelson argued, “Chauvin has been reduced to this incident and portrayed as a dangerous man… But behind politics, Mr. Chauvin is still a human being.”
Before Floyd’s death, Chauvin was a “husband, stepfather, uncle, brother and son.”
According to Nelson, he still has a close relationship with his family and although they are divorced, Nelson states that he is “still supported by his ex-wife”.
Nelson also noted that Chauvin was diagnosed with heart damage at age 45 and “will likely die at a younger age, like many ex-law enforcement officers.”
But he described Chauvin’s age as a “substantial and compelling factor,” in his bid to get a probation sentence as, “he still has the ability to positively impact his family and community.”
Judge Cahill will hand out his sentence at a hearing on June 25.
Chauvin is pictured during his murder trial for the death of George Floyd
The defense and prosecution’s double motions came a day after Chauvin appeared in federal court via video link from prison to be charged with violating Floyd’s civil rights.
Chauvin was asked by the judge if he understood he could legally challenge his detention under the federal charges while the trial continued.
“Given my current circumstances, I think that would be a moot point,” Chauvin replied.
The judge said the next step was for Chauvin to be formally arraigned, and said a date would be announced soon.
Federal charges allege Chauvin violated Floyd’s rights when he held him face down while handcuffed, offered no resistance and gasped.
Three other former officers – J. Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao – are facing similar federal charges.
Chauvin is also facing charges in a separate lawsuit for violation of the rights of a 14-year-old boy in 2017.
Read excerpts from Nelson’s Wednesday motion: