St. Louis leaders react after Derek Chauvin found guilty

Community officials, law enforcement officers and organizers responded to the verdict on Tuesday afternoon

ST. LOUIS – On Tuesday, the Derek Chauvin Trial jury issued a guilty verdict on all three counts in the 2020 murder of George Floyd.

The jury seated for the chauvinist trial began deliberations on Monday after a full day of final arguments. They ended at 8 p.m. and resumed at 8 a.m. Tuesday morning. The verdict was pronounced Tuesday afternoon and Chauvin was handcuffed from the courtroom after his bail was revoked.

RELATED: Live: Derek Chauvin has been convicted of murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd

Many leaders in the St. Louis area responded to the judgment in the moments after it was pronounced.

US Representative Cori Bush, who led demonstrations in Ferguson and St. Louis before winning a seat in the House of Representatives, called the result “accountability, but it is not yet justice”.

“Justice saves lives for us,” she said on Tuesday afternoon.

Cori Bush on Chauvin’s verdict: “This was accountability, but it was not justice. Justice saves lives for us. “Pic.twitter.com/uJM5MqiWj0

– Andrew Solender (@AndrewSolender) April 20, 2021

State Representative Rasheen Aldridge was a political outsider who gained national attention during the Ferguson protests. Now he represents his district at Missouri House. Before the verdict, he said America was on trial and tweeted his response after the verdict was pronounced.

America is on trial right now. The systems in place that keep telling people of color that it doesn’t matter are brought to justice. How will the pendulum swing? #Justice

– Rep. Rasheen Aldridge. Jr (@RepSheenBean) April 20, 2021

Guilty of all charges. What is that real moment right now?

– Rep. Rasheen Aldridge. Jr (@RepSheenBean) April 20, 2021

Civil rights activist and community leader Rev. Darryl Gray said the verdict was a “continuation of the movement”.

Today justice kept its eyes open to racism and prevailed. But let’s not celebrate this guilty verdict too much because this is still delaying justice. This moment is not a festival but should be seen as a continuation of the movement.

– Darryl Gregory Gray (@ DarrylGregoryG2) April 20, 2021

St. Louis Police Chief John Hayden released the following statement Tuesday afternoon:

“For the last nine and a half minutes of George Floyd’s life, he shouted the words“ Please, ”“ Mom ”and“ I can’t breathe. ”If Chauvin had just checked that Mr. Floyd was breathing properly or adjusted his position to do so that if he had not died, he could, if the world had not broken out in protest and we had not anticipated today’s judgments, the failure to verify the physical well-being of those in our care is a violation against the department’s policies, a violation of the law regarding first responders, a contravention of the oath we swear, and a departure from basic human decency. Today’s judgments were fair and correct. Now is the time begin the process of restoring the broken relationship between our department and the community we serve. “

The Ethical Society of Police, the membership organization that represents mostly black officials in the St. Louis area, made the following statement:

“The guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial was just a pebble in the sea. Law enforcement reform needs to be in place to prevent a tragic death like this from occurring. We as minorities are getting tired of harsh law enforcement agencies.” We are tired of falling victim to systemic prejudice and racism against us.

“This victory is small, but historic. But why should we be grateful for something that is right? Why should we be grateful when George Floyd has neither his life nor his future. We all have to keep fighting for change. We need a change in law enforcement policy. We need a change that recognizes minorities as productive citizens in society. We need changes to end this systemic racism. “

Further answers from the legislature

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker

“No courtroom can ever replace a life, but it can and should bring justice. Today the jury in Derek Chauvin’s murder trial recognized this truth.

“My heart goes out to George Floyd’s family who deserve to have him alive today. I also think of all of our black and other color communities who see their children or their parents or themselves in George Floyd, Daunte Wright, Adam Toledo, Breonna Taylor and Laquan McDonald.

“This judgment marks an important milestone on the road to justice, but the most comprehensive measure of progress is how we ensure accountability, security and meaningful change.

“In Illinois, our focus is on law enforcement reform, criminal justice reform, economic opportunity, educational justice, and health care.

“We can and must make progress every day until we have a state, nation, and judicial system that truly serve everyone. And as long as there is more work to be done, we will. “

Members of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen

Justice was served today but there is still a lot to do 🙏🏿 # GeorgeFloyd #ChauvinTrial

– Lewis E. Reed (@ LewisReedSTL) April 20, 2021

Derek Chauvin was found GUILTY. GUILTY. GUILTY.

May this mark the beginning of a long healing process and initiate much-needed police reform.

– Cara Spencer (@CaraSpencerSTL) April 20, 2021

What a day of change, all of you. https://t.co/CvQu1aOSIN

– Christine Ingrassia (@chryssi) April 20, 2021

Justice served. Chauvin was found guilty on all three counts. There is still so much to be done.

– Heather B. Navarro (@HeatherNStL) April 20, 2021

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