Minnesota vs. Oklahoma Law: How Chauvin Trial Would Have Been Different Here

Tuesday, April 20th 2021, 9:14 pm
By: Jordan Tidwell

TULSA, Oklahoma -

The jury in Minnesota was able to convict Derek Chauvin on all three counts, where in Oklahoma, a jury would be allowed to pick just one count. 

A jury found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter.

Related Story: Ex-Cop Derek Chauvin Guilty Of Murder, Manslaughter In George Floyd Case

"First and foremost, the prosecutors filed this in such a way filed this in such a way that the jury had three options they could consider," said former Tulsa County District Attorney, Tim Harris. 

Harris said in Oklahoma the law is different.

"In Oklahoma they would have to choose, right? They would have to choose the theory of how Mr. Floyd died at Derek Chauvin the officer," he said. 

Related Story: Tulsa Community Activists Call For Police Reform After Chauvin Conviction

The next step in the process is sentencing for Derek Chauvin. 

"They'll go into the background of Derek Chauvin and find out pretty much everything about his life that will be presented to the court."

While he was convicted of all three counts, Harris said Minnesota law said he will only be serving time for the strongest conviction, which is up to 40 years.

Chauvin's attorneys can ask for a shorter sentence since he's never been convicted of a crime, but prosecutors can argue a harsh sentence based on the circumstances of Floyd's death. 

"He will only be sentenced under the most severe crime that he was found guilty of," he said. 

The sentencing date for Derek Chauvin has not been set.