The Fight Over Derek Chauvin’s $1 Million Bail Shows the System Is Irrational and Broken
Derek Chauvin, the now-fired Minneapolis police officer facing second-degree murder and manslaughter charges for killing George Floyd in the line of duty in May, was released from pretrial detention last week, and his bail conditions will allow him to leave the state, an unusual deviation from typical bail rules.
Chauvin’s bail was not cheap—he had to put up a $1 million conditional bond through a bail bond agency, meaning his family or somebody who supports him is having to pay $100,000 to the agency that they’ll never get back, even if Chauvin is found not guilty.
Floyd’s death has inspired across the country a summer of heated anger, protesting, and riots over police misconduct. The video footage of Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck has made Chauvin and the three other former police officers who were involved targets. Their lawyers told a judge that they’ve received several death threats and they were confronted by angry protesters outside a courthouse after a pretrial hearing.
Due to all the tension, Hennepin County Judge Peter A. Cahill ruled that Chauvin would be allowed to leave Minneapolis and hole up somewhere else in the state or in one of the states contiguous to Minnesota for his own safety. The address would be shared with the court and those who need to know where he is.
CNN reports that some were outraged at Chauvin being granted bail at all. For consistency’s sake, they shouldn’t be. The point of bail i
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