America reacts to Derek Chauvin's conviction

Washington, United States: Politicians, rights activists, and family members, and even world leaders reacted with jubilation and relief Tuesday as sacked Minneapolis policeman Derek Chauvin was convicted of the murder of George Floyd, a Black man who died when the officer knelt on his neck for more than nine minutes last year.

Here are some of the immediate reactions following the announcement of the guilty verdicts on all three counts -- second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter.

US President Joe Biden 

"Nothing is going to make it all better but at least, God, now there's some justice. We're all so relieved -- not just the one verdict but all three, guilty on all three counts." - Biden on a call to the Floyd family

"This is a day of justice in America. History will look back at this moment." - Kamala Harris, America's first Black vice president, who was also on the call

Family  

"I am feeling tears of joy, so emotional that no family in history ever got this far. We were able to get a guilty charge on all counts. We got a chance to go to trial and we took it all the way. This right here is for everyone that's been in this situation. Everybody." - Floyd's brother, Rodney Floyd

"GUILTY! Painfully earned justice has finally arrived for George Floyd’s family. This verdict is a turning point in history and sends a clear message on the need for accountability of law enforcement. Justice for Black America is justice for all of America!" - Floyd family lawyer Ben Crump

Politicians

"George Floyd's family and community deserved for his killer to be held accountable. Today, they got that accountability." - former first lady and ex-US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

"I'm thankful for George Floyd's family that justice was served. America was forever changed by the video of Derek Chauvin killing George Floyd. However, a guilty verdict doesn’t mean the persistent problem of police misconduct is solved. We'll keep working for meaningful change" - US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

"That a family had to lose a son, brother, and father; that a teenage girl had to film and post a murder, that millions across the country had to organize and march just for George Floyd to be seen and valued is not justice. And this verdict is not a substitute for policy change." - US Congresswoman and Democratic rising star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Also read | Floyd-killer Derek Chauvin guilty of all charges, arrested

"Today's verdict is an important step forward for justice in Minnesota. The trial is over but our work has only just begun." - Minnesota governor Tim Walz

Academia, activism, and tech 

"Chauvin might never see the light of freedom again. That would be just. But it wouldn't be nearly enough. The SYSTEM that let him murder George Floyd must be changed. But for a bystander’s iPhone camera, Chauvin we've gotten away with murder!" - Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe.

"The evidence of our eyes met at last by accountability in the eyes of justice" - US voting rights activist and Democrat Stacy Abrams

"While today’s verdict is a step forward in the fight for police accountability and may help heal a grieving community, the systems that allowed a police officer to murder Mr. Floyd, ripping him away from his family and the communities that loved him so much, remain fully intact." - the American Civil Liberties Union

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"Right now I'm thinking of George Floyd, his family, and those who knew him. I hope this verdict brings some measure of comfort to them, and to everyone who can't help but see themselves in his story. We stand in solidarity with you, knowing that this is part of a bigger struggle against racism and injustice." - Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg

International 

"I was appalled by the death of George Floyd and welcome this verdict. My thoughts tonight are with George Floyd’s family and friends." - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson

'Justice served' NBA, players praise Chauvin guilty verdict

On Tuesday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver praised the results of the Derek Chauvin murder trial, saying that justice had been done against the former police officer who was found guilty of murdering unarmed Black man George Floyd.

The NBA president said in a joint statement with National Basketball Players Association executive director Michele Roberts that the league will continue to advocate for criminal justice and police reforms.

"George Floyd's murder was a flashpoint for how we look at race and justice in our country, and we are pleased that justice appears to have been served," Silver and Roberts said.

"But we also recognize that there is much work to be done with the National Basketball Association and the National Basketball Players Association, together with our newly formed Social Justice Coalition, will redouble our efforts to advocate for meaningful change in the areas of criminal justice and policing," they added.

In May of last year, NBA players joined national demonstrations against Floyd's killing in Minneapolis, and the league later urged players to exchange social justice messages when the pandemic-interrupted season resumed.

The words "Black Lives Matter" were prominently displayed on courts during games held in the NBA's bubble in Orlando.

Meanwhile, the Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx WNBA teams issued a joint statement praising Tuesday's decision.

"One year ago, George Floyd was murdered, causing unimaginable pain and trauma for his family, the Minneapolis community, and communities across the nation," the teams said.

"We are hopeful that today's decision will serve as a step forward, but it does not ease the physical and emotional pain that continues in an environment where systemic racism exists."

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