‘He had no choice but to admit to it’: Floyd family reacts to Chauvin’s guilty plea

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The family of George Floyd had mixed feelings about Derek Chauvin’s guilty plea in federal court Wednesday.

The former Minneapolis police officer pleaded guilty to depriving Floyd of his civil rights by kneeling on his neck as he was handcuffed and not resisting in May 2020.

"At this point in time, he had no choice but to admit to it," said Terrence Floyd, brother of George Floyd.

Another brother, Rodney Floyd, added, "I’m still feeling the same pain, anger I felt in the beginning because he could have done this last year."

Wednesday’s court date was the first time the family has seen Chauvin in person since his sentencing in the state’s criminal case in June.

5 EYEWITNESS News asked the family what they felt while sitting behind the ex-officer in court.

"What I want to say I don’t think is suitable for all of these cameras, but very bad thoughts. I want him to feel the same pain that we felt watching the video. I want him to feel the same pain he inflicted on George Floyd," said Floyd’s nephew Brandon Williams.

A sentencing date, in this case, has not been set.

"The possibility of him getting more time and having to serve more time, that’s a good thing," Williams said.

Floyd’s brothers said, even though the guilty plea is a step toward accountability, they will never feel complete closure or heal from the loss.

"I don’t really feel too much because I can’t get George back," said Philonise Floyd.

The family hopes the public will continue to demand change.

"It’s a fight we still need to fight and today kind of gave us a spark that we’re heading in the right direction," Williams said.

After leaving the federal courthouse in St. Paul, the Floyd family went to the Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis, where former Brooklyn Center police officer Kimberly Potter is on trial for the shooting death of Daunte Wright.

Floyd’s brothers said they wanted to sit alongside the Wrights on day six of testimony in the case.

"When we were going through ours, they were right by our side too, so we’re going to reciprocate the love," Terrence Floyd said.

5 EYEWITNESS News also reached out to Chauvin’s attorney, Eric Nelson, about Wednesday’s federal plea deal.

He responded: "Thank you for your inquiry. I am still not commenting on the case."