The note guilty cop wrote on his hand before George Floyd verdict

Yahoo News Australia and agencies
·4-min read

Moments after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of murdering George Floyd, eagle-eyed witnesses noticed something odd about his left hand.

As Chauvin exited the courtroom, it became clear that he had black ink scrawled across the palm of his hand. 

His lawyer confirmed to TMZ the disgraced former cop had written a phone number.

Derek Chauvin wrote his lawyer's phone number on the palm of his hand, before the conviction was handed down. Source:
Derek Chauvin wrote his lawyer's phone number on the palm of his hand, before the conviction was handed down. Source:

The phone number belonged to the lawyer, Eric Nelson, and Chauvin wrote it on his hand before the conviction in anticipation of a "guilty" verdict.

Mr Nelson did not elaborate on what he and Chauvin might talk about, though TMZ speculated if Chauvin wrote the number on a piece of paper, it may be confiscated. 

Chauvin, 45, was found guilty of all three charges of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter after considering three weeks of testimony from 45 witnesses, including bystanders, police officials and medical experts. 

George Floyd's death prompted widespread protests across the US. Source: AP
George Floyd's death prompted widespread protests across the US. Source: AP

Deliberations began on Monday and lasted more than 10 hours, Reuters reported.

Chauvin, wearing a grey suit and a face mask, nodded and stood quickly when the judge revoked his bail and ordered him into custody.

Mr Nelson followed Chauvin out of the courtroom without comment.

The verdict was a milestone in the fraught racial history of the United States and a rebuke of law enforcement's treatment of black Americans.

It is unusual for police officers to be prosecuted for killing someone on the job and convictions are extraordinarily rare.

Former Minneapolis Police Department Police Officer Derek Chauvin who was convicted of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd. Source: EPA via AAP
Former Minneapolis Police Department Police Officer Derek Chauvin who was convicted of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd. Source: EPA via AAP

Sentencing will be in two months, though Chauvin could be in prison for decades, the most serious charge carries up to 40 years in prison.

Chauvin was captured on film pushing his knee to Floyd, a 46-year-old black man in handcuffs, for more than nine minutes on May 25, 2020.

Three other officers and Chauvin were attempting at arrest Floyd who was accused of using a fake $US20 bill to purchase cigarettes and the grocery store at the time of the murder.

Cheers erupt after verdict announced

At a joyous family news conference on Tuesday, Floyd's brother Philonise said he had been getting messages from around the world.

"They're all saying the same thing: 'We won't be able to breathe until you're able to breathe.' Today, we are able to breathe again," he told reporters.

Philonise Floyd, brother of George Floyd, reacts during a news conference after the verdict was read in the trial of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin. Source: AP
Philonise Floyd, brother of George Floyd, reacts during a news conference after the verdict was read in the trial of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin. Source: AP

Outside the courthouse, a crowd of several hundred people erupted in cheers when the verdict was announced - a scene that unfolded in cities across the country.

Car horns honked, demonstrators blocked traffic and chanted: "George Floyd" and "All three counts".

At the intersection where Floyd was pinned down, a crowd chanted, “One down, three to go!” — a reference to the three other fired Minneapolis officers facing trial in August on charges of aiding and abetting murder in Floyd’s death.

Janay Henry, who lives nearby, said she felt grateful and relieved.

A celebration for the guilty verdicts in the Derek Chauvin murder case of George Floyd held in South Los Angeles. Source: SIPA USA via AAP
A celebration for the guilty verdicts in the Derek Chauvin murder case of George Floyd held in South Los Angeles. Source: SIPA USA via AAP

“I feel grounded. I can feel my feet on the concrete,” she said, adding that she was looking forward to the “next case with joy and optimism and strength.”

President Joe Biden welcomed the guilty verdict.

"It was a murder in the full light of day and it ripped the blinders off for the whole world to see the systemic racism," Biden said in televised remarks.

"This can be a giant step forward in the march toward justice in America."

Just minutes before the verdict in George Floyd’s killing was read, Columbus police shot and killed a teenage girl who swung at two other people with a knife on Tuesday (local time).

With Reuters and Associated Press

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