Guam leaders laud Chauvin guilty verdict

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin listens as the verdict is read at the conclusion of his trial in the death of George Floyd, April 20 2021, at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis. (Court TV via ABC News)

Guam leaders reacted positively to the guilty verdict handed out in the Derek Chauvin case.

The former Minneapolis police officer was found guilty on all three counts in the death of George Floyd.

Governor Lou Leon Guerrero said she echoes the sentiments of leaders across the nation.

“This verdict holds Derek Chauvin accountable for his actions, but there is no justice in a system that allows, and too often excuses, police brutality against people of color, especially the Black community. The outcome of the trial will not bring back George Floyd and will not end systemic racism, but today, we exhale, we mourn, and we continue the fight,” Leon Guerrero said.

Former Guam Congressman Robert Underwood, in an interview with K57’s Patti Arroyo, said that while there is a sense of relief that the country is not going to have massive riots or protests, there’s also the sense that justice has been served.

“And that’s a little bit more important I believe. I think that what we have seen here is the application of the rule of law, that the rule of law applies to law enforcement as much as it applies to the general community, and that’s really an important feature of this, of course, throughout our lives,” Underwood said.

He added: “The victory here should be for the rule of law, that, you know, people don’t get a break just because they have a badge. They’re supposed to pay attention to the law.”

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris reacted to the verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial in an address from the White House.

Biden called the guilty verdict a “giant step forward in the march toward justice in America” and commended the witnesses who testified, including police officers.

“Most men and women who wear the badge serve their communities honorably. Those few who failed to meet that standard must be held accountable, and they were today. One was,” Biden said. “No one should be above the law. And today’s verdict sends that message.”

“But it’s not enough,” he continued. “We can’t stop here. In order to deliver a real change in reform, we can and we must do more to reduce the likelihood that tragedy like this will ever happen to occur again.”

Harris called the verdict a step forward in law enforcement reform.

“A measure of justice isn’t the same as equal justice,” she said. “We still have work to do.” (with ABC News)