Former Minneapolis police officer, Thomas Lane, was sentenced Wednesday to three years in state prison for violating the civil rights of George Floyd, who died while being restrained.
Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill pronounced the sentence pursuant to Lane’s plea agreement with state prosecutors, The Hill reported.
In May, the 39-year-old former cop pleaded guilty in the state’s case to aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter, having held down Floyd’s legs while Derek Chauvin pinned the man down by kneeling on his neck for more than nine minutes.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison’s office explained that, in exchange for the guilty plea, prosecutors agreed to dismiss the murder charge. State and defense attorneys conferred and recommended a sentence of 36 months.
At the time of the agreement, Ellison said that it was an “important step toward healing the wounds of the Floyd family, our community, and the nation.”
Lane is already serving a 27-month sentence for a federal conviction of violating Floyd’s rights, a penalty that was a lot less than what Floyd’s family sought. The judge in that case, Paul Magnuson, called it “a very serious offense in which a life was lost.”
The family can rest a little easier knowing Lane has been sentenced in the state case, as well. However, his total time in prison will not add up to 63 months, in the end. During sentencing, Cahill said that Lane will receive 31 days of credit for time he has already served. He will be allowed to serve his state prison time concurrently with his federal sentence.
The prisoner heard his sentence read over closed circuit television from a federal prison in Colorado, where he is serving his time for the federal decision.
Lane was one of three officers facing charges in the case. Tou Thao, 36, and J. Alexander Kueng, 28, were sentenced in July to 42 months and 36 months, respectively, on federal charges. Their sentences in state cases, where they have already been found guilty, are still pending.
Derek Chauvin was also sentenced in July and is in prison, serving 42 years (on combined state and federal charges) for the murder of George Floyd, the unwitting martyr in the Black Lives Matter movement.
The fatal incident in May 2020 led to an advanced state of unrest in cities across America and around the world. With a $2 billion price tag for damages, the riots were dubbed ‘protests’ against systematic racism and police brutality. Fox News was the one major outlet that consistently called them riots. The lawlessness extended even to unwise and destructive calls to defund the police.
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