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World reacts to Chauvin verdict

Plus: Biden renews calls to address racial discrimination in policing; Obamas say jury did the ‘right thing’ in finding Chauvin guilty; conviction brings joy, relief to mother of Philando Castile; and more.

Protesters marched following the verdict in the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, in Brooklyn, New York City, on Tuesday.
Protesters marched following the verdict in the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, in Brooklyn, New York City, on Tuesday.
REUTERS/Jeenah Moon

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In the Washington Post, Arelis R. Hernández, Cleve R. Wootson Jr. write: The murder conviction of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in Floyd’s death brought relief, but it also spurred reflection on the justice deferred for many other Black men and women, Danyal Green said. ‘My dad never got a chance to see this,’ she said through sobs. ‘My grandmother never got a chance to see this. But in my lifetime and in my children’s lifetime, they got a chance to see it.’ They were not the only ones with mixed emotions. Across the country, Black Americans welcomed the conviction of Chauvin on three charges with free-flowing tears, raised fists and unbridled elation. But the positive feelings were tempered by outrage over other injustices and worries that one officer’s conviction would be held up as proof that the systemic problems highlighted by Floyd’s killing were solved.”

In The New York Times, Audra D. S. Burch, Amy Harmon, Sabrina Tavernise and The verdict brought some solace to activists for racial justice who had been riveted to the courtroom drama for the past several weeks. But for many Black Americans, real change feels elusive, particularly given how relentlessly the killing of Black men by the police has continued, including the recent shooting death of Daunte Wright in a Minneapolis suburb. There are also signs of backlash: Legislation that would reduce voting access, protect the police and effectively criminalize public protests has sprung up in Republican-controlled state legislatures.”

In the Pioneer Press, Mary Divine writes: Valerie Castile couldn’t bear to watch the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. Castile, whose 32-year-old son, Philando, was shot five times by former officer Jeronimo Yanez after a traffic stop in Falcon Heights, said she didn’t want to be re-traumatized by testimony given during the trial of the man who killed George Floyd. … But Castile tuned in on Tuesday afternoon to watch the news that a Hennepin County jury had found Chauvin guilty on all three charges…. ‘I was elated, just ecstatic,’ she said. ‘My daughter and I shared a few tears, and we were so thankful. We want to thank the prosecutors, the activists and everyone who was involved in making accountability actually happen. Any conviction is a victory for us, but to have all three, oh my God, I was, like, “Yes!“‘”

Says Melissa Chan for TIME, “Chauvin’s trial has now made history in a city whose police department has a long history of racist incidents and in a nation where criminal charges for police officers are rare and convictions extraordinary. From January 2005 to March 11, 2021, just 138 law-enforcement officers had been charged with murder or manslaughter for on-duty shootings, according to an analysis prepared for TIME by Philip Stinson, a professor of criminal justice who also directs the Henry A. Wallace Police Crime Database at Bowling Green State University. Of the 138 officers, 44 have been convicted.

At USA Today, McKenzie Sadeghi reports, “Shortly after the prosecution and defense rested their cases in the murder trial of Derek Chauvin for the death of George Floyd, an article was circulating claiming former President Donald Trump picked up Chauvin’s legal fees. … The claim that Trump is paying Chauvin’s legal fees originated in an April 17 article from americaslastlineofdefense.com — a satire site — headlined, ‘Trump Picking Up Officer Chauvin’s Legal Fees.’ Some social media users shared the article on Facebook as fact, and one user received criticism in the comments for not realizing the story is satire.

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