COMMENTARY: ANDREA GONZALEZ, CHRONICLE STAFF WRITER
Nearly a month ago, It was announced that a jury found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of all three charges put against him, which is progress in the fight for accountability.
Chauvin has become the national picture of racial injustice, and now that he awaits sentencing, justice rights advocates across the country are applauding the ruling, and here locally at Cypress college students say that the right decision was made.
Last year in March, George Floyd was murdered in broad daylight by a police officer in the Minneapolis police department. According to the New York Times, not only were there 48 witnesses but the whole thing was recorded by a bystander for the whole world to see.
Police officers around the country need to be held accountable for their actions. Something as heinous as killing another person for no legitimate reason should not go unnoticed and without the appropriate punishments.
In an informal survey that asked questions about the recent verdict, 5 Cypress college students all agree with the recent verdict that former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is guilty of killing George Floyd, and this is what they had to say.
“What he did was horrible,” said Jessica Sanchez, a biology major. “He knew George Floyd kept stating that he couldn’t breathe yet decided to ignore his plea for help.”
“Floyd was already handcuffed and there were plenty of officers that could have kept him in check if he were to do anything,” stated Samuel Banderas, kinesiology major. “There was no reason for Derek Chauvin to keep his knee on his neck for that long of a time nor should he have put his knee there in the first place.”
Following Chauvin’s trial, students have expressed this is a small step towards accountability.
“I think it’s a stepping stone towards new reform in the justice system where we are finally able to hold these officers accountable,” states Jahaziel Ramos, accounting major.
“I think it is a monumental case that I myself hoped would turn out the way it did,” said James Cruz, accounting major. “I believe that the government will eventually institute some sort of program to properly assess police officers and make sure they are fit for the job.”
“A huge eye-opener to a flaw in the justice system,” said Jesus Soto, a business major. “Simply racial discrimination was a factor.”
While only a small survey of students was asked about the verdict the situation is clear: college students agree he was guilty.
For nine and a half minutes, Floyd was under Chauvin’s knee, according to the New York Times. Floyd was not resisting former police officer Chauvin, he was resisting death. No one should be able to do what Chauvin did and just get a slap on the wrist.
“It is not part of our training. And it is certainly not part of our ethics or our values,” stated Chief of the Minneapolis Police Department, Medaria Arradondo in an article posted by the New York Times.
However, Chauvin’s attorney filed a motion May 4 “asking for a new trial on several grounds, including jury misconduct,” according to the New York Times.
What Chauvin did was not policing, it was murder. Chauvin being announced guilty is a very small step towards justice, but justice has not been served yet. This was not justice because this continues to happen to this day, this is the accountability of one killing out of thousands that have gone unnoticed. As stated before, accountability is a step towards the right direction but is not justice.