MIAMI (CBSMiami) – From local politicians to South Florida sports teams, reaction to the Derek Chauvin guilty verdict in the murder of George Floyd is rolling in.
Chauvin was found guilty of unintentional second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter on Tuesday afternoon.READ MORE: 3 Rushed To Area Hospitals Following Shooting At Aventura Mall
Florida Senator Shevrin Jones (D-Miami Gardens) released the following statement.
“The emotion, as a young Black man in this country, to have justice prevail in the Chauvin murder trial that has captivated the world’s attention is indescribable. While millions of people breathe a sigh of relief for this accountability, there is still so much work to be done. What’s clear is that it is long past time to address systemic racism in this country, and I will continue to push for real reforms so that everyone can live safely without fear of harassment, discrimination, or being killed. I continue to pray for the Floyd family and others across the country who’ve suffered immense, unnecessary loss due to nothing more than the color of their skin.”
Florida Senator Perry Thurston (D-Ft. Lauderdale) released this statement.
“Judgement has been rendered, and justice has been served. The death of George Floyd laid bare the disparate treatment at the hands of law enforcement many in the minority community throughout our country have sounded the alarm over, cried over, and protested over for years. With the conviction of Derek Chauvin today, those voices were finally heard. It is my hope that those who would offer crackdowns on peaceful protestors instead of examining the reasons for those protests, heed the lessons contained in that judgement of guilt. Police officers are just as human as the rest of us. There are good officers and, unfortunately, a few bad ones among them. Silencing the outcries for justice when an officer goes rogue serves no one and heightens the distrust between those in blue and those they have pledged to serve and protect.”
Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson issued the following statement:
“I am both elated and relieved that the jurors in the Derek Chauvin trial delivered a swift verdict of guilty on all counts. They believed their eyes and justice prevailed. I am also relieved for the Floyd family, who throughout this ordeal has acted with extraordinary bravery and grace. For decades, law enforcement officers have needlessly killed unarmed black men and boys without recrimination. This verdict sends a powerful message that such disregard for human lives will no longer be tolerated and that rogue police officers will face very serious consequences for their reckless behavior. The Derek Chauvin trial was about so much more than the outcome. Our nation’s criminal justice system also was on trial and this outcome says a lot about whether any real lessons have been learned about the imperative to hold police accountable for irresponsible and deadly behaviors, especially the fatal shootings of unarmed people. Of course, one favorable outcome does not exonerate our entire criminal justice system or signal that the wrongs, against which millions protested in the past year, have been righted. It does give us hope, however, that the long arc of the moral universe now bends toward justice.”
State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle reacted with:READ MORE: Miami-Dade Police Lieutenant Faces Rape Charges In Palm Beach County
“What Derek Chauvin did to George Floyd, was not only cold-blooded murder, but also a horrific dereliction of his duties, a dishonor to the men and women who have committed to serve and protect humanity, and an affront to communities throughout the country. Today justice was served. We thank the jurors for their service, and we also thank the police professionals for their testimony and for standing up for good and just policing against Chauvin’s criminal activities. My team and I feel blessed and honored to be prosecutors and to see our colleagues vigorously pursue justice professionally and masterfully. As a nation, we now can begin healing, building trust, transforming policing and improving police-community relations across this nation. We now can also renew our focus on vigorously promoting racial equality generally. Our collective mission now must be for all of us, community members, police, social and criminal justice professionals and lawmakers, business and government to be united in this all-important goal at this critical moment of history in our country. Though it is an emotional day for everyone as the jury has come to a verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin, my plea to our community is that lawful and constitutionally protected actions should be carried out peacefully so as to honor the memory of George Floyd as we move forward in addressing serious policing issues and advancements.”
A statement from the Miami Heat reads:
“Today, the ‘arc of the moral universe,’ of which Dr. King spoke, has bent towards justice. The Miami HEAT joins people all around the world in acknowledging and affirming the outcome of the trial in Minneapolis, which has rightfully dealt out severe condemnation for the senseless death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer. While we are heartened by the trial’s outcome, and, frankly, relieved, much work remains ahead of us on behalf of the countless Black Americans we’ve lost to unceasing violence, to reform our justice system so that it lives up to its promise to provide liberty and justice for all.”
The Urban League of Broward applauds the Chauvin conviction.
“This is an important step towards justice for George Floyd, and his family, and our entire nation. Nearly one year ago, protests erupted around the nation in response to his murder, and for nearly 10 minutes, we all watched in horror as he pleaded for his life. While today’s conviction stands as an exception to the norm regarding police brutality convictions, we remain adamant and hopeful about the need for common-sense justice reform. Racial trauma has left the Black community in a perpetual state of grief, incessantly triggered by fatal encounters with police – leaving little to no room in our nation for healing. We demand that Congress pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to further demonstrate a commitment to racial justice and to end the unjustified killing of Black people in America.”
LaToya Ratlieff, who was shot in the face with a rubber bullet during a Black Lives Matter protest on May 31, 2020, also released a statement.
“Justice is real today for the Floyd family. George Floyd’s murderer is where he belongs. But real justice is ensuring laws are enacted to make sure there isn’t a next George Floyd. Real justice means treating all lives as having equal value and protecting them from harm at the hands of those who we entrust with immense power.”MORE NEWS: COVID In Florida: 3,977 New Cases, 66 Additional Deaths Reported Saturday
According to the Fort Lauderdale police department, the officer was not aiming for Ratlieff, but rather another protester who three a chemical munition canister at police.