Chauvin was arrested this week, days after video showed him holding a knee to the neck of Floyd during an arrest and ignoring the man’s pleas that he could not breathe. Video showed that Chauvin continued to hold his knee into Floyd’s neck for several minutes after the man became unresponsive, and Floyd later died.
Chauvin was not initially arrested, but on Friday was taken into custody and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter for Floyd’s death. Hours after Hennepin County Attorney Michael Freeman announced Chauvin’s arrest, a lawyer representing his wife, Kellie Chauvin, released a statement on her behalf saying that she was filing for divorce.
The statement called for privacy for Kellie Chauvin and her children from a previous marriage. In the days after Floyd’s death, protesters have been showing up to Derek Chauvin’s home in Minneapolis. Other protesters tracked down properties listed to Derek Chauvin in other states, with some saying they planned to protest there as well.
During this time, Derek Chauvin did not make any appearances or public statements.
On Friday, his wife spoke out to say that she was filing for divorce and felt devastated for Floyd and his family.
“This evening, I spoke with Kellie Chauvin and her family. She is devastated by Mr. Floyd’s death and her utmost sympathy lies with his family, with his loved ones and with everyone who is grieving this tragedy. She has filed for dissolution of her marriage to Derek Chauvin,” the Sekula Law Office said in a statement Friday night, via ABC News. “While Ms. Chauvin has no children from her current marriage, she respectfully requests that her children, her elder parents, and her extended family be given safety and privacy during this difficult time.”
Derek Chauvin was the arresting officer in an incident on Monday in which Floyd was accused of using a fake $20 bill to make a purchase at Cup Foods. Prosecutors said that he initially resisted being handcuffed, but video of the incident showed that he appeared to comply with officers as they led him to a police car. As ABC News reported, the local prosecutor’s office said that Floyd did become compliant as officers held him on the ground, but Chauvin and other officers continued to use force to subdue him.