Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin appealed his conviction for the murder of George Floyd, citing 14 complaints related to his trial earlier this year.
The death of Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, in May 2020 sparked the largest US rallies for racial justice in decades.
Chauvin, who was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison in June for killing Floyd by kneeling on his neck for nearly 10 minutes, appealed the conviction Thursday night in Minnesota district court, the last day he was able to do so.
He accuses the state of harmful misconduct and lists multiple issues with the jury selected for trial, among other objections.
The ex-cop, a 45-year-old white man, was captured on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck, indifferent to the moans of the dying man and the pleas of anguished passersby.
The scene, filmed and uploaded by a young woman, quickly went viral. Subsequently, hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets across the country and abroad to demand an end to racism and police brutality.
The former cop and three of his colleagues arrested Floyd on suspicion of having approved a counterfeit $ 20 bill at a store in Minneapolis, a northern city of about 400,000 residents. They handcuffed him and pinned him to the ground on the street.
It took a jury less than 10 hours in April to convict Chauvin of Floyd’s murder at the end of a high-profile trial. He was convicted of all three counts: murder in the second degree, murder in the third degree and murder in the second degree.
The other three police officers will face state charges next year for their role in Floyd’s death.
Chauvin’s conviction was greeted with relief across the country. Many had feared an acquittal would lead to worse riots, while others worried that a white police officer would once again get away with what they viewed as murder.
The Floyd family’s attorney called the sentence a “historic” step toward racial reconciliation in the United States.
Chauvin had a history of using excessive force before Floyd, unarmed, died below his knee.