Former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin has been sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison for the 2020 murder of George Floyd.

The sentence, handed down Friday afternoon in a Minnesota courtroom, is 7 1/2 years shy of the 30 years prosecutors were asking for. Chauvin could have received a maximum sentence of 40 years on his charges, per Minnesota law.

Following the sentencing, the family of George Floyd — the Minneapolis man who died while Chauvin kneeled on his neck, cutting off his ability to breath — released a statement in which they praised the judge’s decision. “This historic sentence brings the Floyd family and our nation one step closer to healing by delivering closure and accountability,” the statement reads.

“For once, a police officer who wrongly took the life of a Black man was held to account. Today, with Chauvin’s sentence, we take a significant step forward –- something that was unimaginable a very short time ago.”

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