Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey praised George Floyd following the guilty verdict on Tuesday against former police officer Derek Chauvin for Floyd's murder.
"George Floyd came to Minneapolis to better his life. But ultimately his life will have bettered our city," the Democratic mayor wrote on Twitter. "The jury joined in a shared conviction that has animated Minneapolis for the last 11 months. They refused to look away and affirmed he should still be here today."
Chauvin, 45, was found guilty Tuesday of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
Chauvin's sentencing is scheduled for eight weeks from now.
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Frey’s remarks of praise didn’t land with everyone - some took issue with the mayor’s characterization of Floyd’s death as a sacrifice for the sake of the city.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi offered a similar sentiment in her press conference with the Congressional Black Caucus.
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"Thank you George Floyd for sacrificing your life for justice," Pelosi said Tuesday outside the Capitol. "Because of you and because of millions of people around the world who came out for justice, your name will always be synonymous with justice. And now we have to make sure justice prevails in the sentencing."
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Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, died on May 25, 2020 after Chauvin held his knee against Floyd's neck or upper body for nine minutes and 29 seconds, as a handcuffed Floyd repeatedly said that he could not breathe. Police were called to the area on that day for a report that Floyd had used a counterfeit $20 bill to buy cigarettes at a neighborhood convenience store, Cup Foods.