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Fact check: Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all counts but has yet to be sentenced

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The claim: Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 40 years in prison

On April 20, former Minneapolis police OfficerDerek Chauvin was found guilty of George Floyd's murder, convicted of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

This verdict comes almost a year after Chauvin was filmed kneeling on Floyd's neck for more than nine minutes. The death of Floyd, who was unarmed, inspired nationwide protests and calls for racial justice and changes to policing.

As the world reacts to the verdict, some are getting ahead of themselves and promoting inaccurate claims about a sentence that has not yet been handed down.

“This Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, 45, who was charged with murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd has been sentenced to 40 years behind bars,” claims an April 20 Facebook post.

Fact check: Minnesota police association covering Chauvin's defense, not Trump

The poster did not respond to USA TODAY’s request for comment.

Judge to set sentence in 8 weeks

Minnesota Felony Sentencing Guidelines recommend 12½ years behind bars for a first-time offender, like Chauvin, convicted of the crimes that he was. But the prosecution is seeking a sentence as high as 30 years due to “aggravating factors."

Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill can either grant Chauvin a concurrent or consecutive sentence on the three charges. Concurrent sentences are served at the same time; consecutive sentences are served one charge after the other. A consecutive sentence, with the maximum imposed on each count, could run as long as 75 years.

Derek Chauvin is lead out of the courtroom in handcuffs after a guilty verdict is read during his trial for the death of George Floyd at the courthouse in Minneapolis on April 20, 2021.
Derek Chauvin is lead out of the courtroom in handcuffs after a guilty verdict is read during his trial for the death of George Floyd at the courthouse in Minneapolis on April 20, 2021.

According to the Associated Press, Minnesota defendants usually serve two-thirds of their sentence in prison before getting parole.

Fact check: Arrest video, autopsy contradict claim that George Floyd's death was staged

Chauvin is being held without bail until he is sentenced in about eight weeks. When Cahill ended the proceeding, he said exact dates would come in an upcoming scheduling order. The scheduling order had not been uploaded to Minnesota Judicial Branch’s website.

Our rating: False

We rate the claim that Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 40 years in prison for the murder of George Floyd FALSE, based on our research. A jury did find Chauvin guilty on all counts, but the judge is not scheduled to decide sentencing until June.

Our fact-check sources:

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: False claim Derek Chauvin was already sentenced for murder

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