Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin became one of a small number of police convicted of unlawfully killing someone while on duty after three guilty jury verdicts handed down Tuesday.

YouTube video

Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020 — almost 11 months ago. Chauvin was captured on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes as he gasped, telling the officer he could not breathe.

Soon after Chauvin was walked from the courtroom in handcuffs, South Carolina leaders began posting their reactions to the guilty verdicts.

Here is a collection of statements from social media and sent to the City Paper:

U.S. Rep. James Clyburn, D-Santee

Charleston Police Chief Luther Reynolds

I am pleased there is some measure of justice for the George Floyd family, our nation, our region, our city and our profession.  I have not spoken to a single officer since May 25th when we watched the violent murder of George Floyd, who had anything but disdain, disgust and trouble with what that officer did, how he acted and the trauma he caused George’s family and our nation.  We have so much work to do, together, to make sure we continue to fight for justice for all.  This is but one of many cases of injustice and we must continue to work, together as a community, to make improvements, solve problems, lead reform, press for accountability and make our communities better.  We have much work to accomplish in the days ahead as we preserve towards a better place. (via statement to City Paper)

S.C. Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, D-Orangeburg

S.C. Rep. Mia McLeod, D-Columbia

S.C. Rep. J.A. Moore, D-Hanahan

S.C. Rep. Leon Stavrinakis, D-Charleston

S.C. Rep. Deon Tedder, D-North Charleston

S.C. Rep. Krystle Matthews, D-Ladson

S.C. Sen. Tom Davis, R-Beaufort

Former U.S. Rep. Joe Cunningham

South Carolina Democratic Party

Charleston Democratic Socialists of America

President Joe Biden

Former President Barack Obama


Today, a jury in Minneapolis did the right thing.

For almost a year, George Floyd’s death under the knee of a police officer has reverberated around the world — inspiring murals and marches, sparking conversations in living rooms and new legislation. But a more basic question has always remained: would justice be done?

In this case, at least, we have our answer. But if we’re being honest with ourselves, we know that true justice is about much more than a single verdict in a single trial.

True justice requires that we come to terms with the fact that Black Americans are treated differently, every day. It requires us to recognize that millions of our friends, family, and fellow citizens live in fear that their next encounter with law enforcement could be their last. And it requires us to do the sometimes thankless, often difficult, but always necessary work of making the America we know more like the America we believe in. (via Facebook)

Stay cool. Support City Paper.

City Paper has been bringing the best news, food, arts, music and event coverage to the Holy City since 1997. Support our continued efforts to highlight the best of Charleston with a one-time donation or become a member of the City Paper Club.