Ex-MPD officer convicted of violating Floyd’s civil rights, sentenced to 2.5 years in prison
Former Minneapolis police officer Thomas Lane has been sentenced to 2.5 years (30 months) in federal prison, for violating George Floyd’s civil rights, followed by two years of supervised release.
KSTP-TV was inside the courtroom, where Floyd’s brother, nephew and girlfriend all spoke before Lane was sentenced but the former officer offered no comment.
Floyd’s family asked for Judge Paul Magnuson to sentence Lane to the maximum penalty allowed, but Floyd’s girlfriend offered some words of encouragement for Lane in her statement and said she doesn’t believe he’s a bad person.
Lane’s attorney, Earl Gray, called Lane’s character "impeccable" and argued for a light sentence for the former officer.
Prosecutors argued that Lane didn’t deserve any downward departure given his training, his actions that showed he knew what was supposed to be done but his inaction in doing any of those things, and the fact that he never accepted responsibility for his actions. The government asked for a sentence between 63 and 78 months.
Just before handing down his sentence, Judge Magnuson said, "The fact that you did not get up and remove Mr. Chauvin from Mr. Floyd when Mr. Floyd became unresponsive is a violation of the law, and for this violation, you must be punished," but then noted his rookie status and the difficult position he was in as a new officer.
Lane has also pleaded guilty to the state’s charge of aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death. He is expected to be sentenced for that charge on Sept. 21.
Two other former officers – Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng – were convicted of the same charge. However, Thao and Kueng were also convicted of willfully failing to try to stop former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin from using unreasonable force on Floyd.
KSTP-TV contributed to this story.