Former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama say a Minneapolis jury “did the right thing” in convicting former police officer Derek Chauvin of murdering George Floyd.
Though they said that justice was done in this case, the nation’s first Black president and his wife said in a statement, “we know that true justice is about much more than a single verdict in a single trial.”
“True justice requires that we come to terms with the fact that Black Americans are treated differently, every day. It requires us to recognize that millions of our friends, family, and fellow citizens live in fear that their next encounter with law enforcement could be their last. And it requires us to do the sometimes thankless, often difficult, but always necessary work of making the America we know more like the America we believe in.
“While today’s verdict may have been a necessary step on the road to progress, it was far from a sufficient one. We cannot rest. We will need to follow through with the concrete reforms that will reduce and ultimately eliminate racial bias in our criminal justice system. We will need to redouble efforts to expand economic opportunity for those communities that have been too long marginalized.”
The jury found Chauvin guilty on all three charges — second- and third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter — for Floyd’s killing during an arrest last year.
President Biden spoke with Floyd’s family shortly after the verdict Tuesday.
In video of the phone call shared by the Floyd family’s attorney, Ben Crump, Biden is heard saying, “Nothing is gonna make it all better but at least, God, now there’s some justice.”