EDITORIAL – Court of public opinion convicted Derek Chauvin long ago

Derek Chauvin (right) and his lawyer Eric Nelson in court behind plexiglas.

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

DEREK CHAUVIN was found guilty in the court of public opinion long before the judge read the verdicts at the end of his trial yesterday. The ex-Minneapolis police officer was convicted on charges of murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd that occurred almost a year ago, and is likely to spend decades in prison.

Based on the evidence presented during the two-week trial, the verdicts were just but the process left much to be desired.

The case has been a social time bomb from the start, when cellphone video was posted of Floyd’s arrest and the now-infamous nine minutes-plus of Chauvin’s knee on Floyd’s back and neck.


Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC, publishes the opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at

About Mel Rothenburger (9116 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

1 Comment on EDITORIAL – Court of public opinion convicted Derek Chauvin long ago

  1. Sean McGuinness // April 22, 2021 at 9:39 AM // Reply

    Watching what has been happening to black people south of the border is like watching a hockey game where the ref doesn’t call any penalties even for the gravest of infractions (or maybe just 2 minutes for a slash to the head – unsportsmanlike conduct). If I have choose between what my eyes see and what the ref says, I’m gonna believe my eyes.

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