“A woman sits in the street during protests at 38th St and S. Chicago Avenue in Minneapolis on Wednesday, after the death of George Floyd on Monday night in Minneapolis, Minnesota” by Lorie Shaull is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Below are some of the reactions at Mule Creek State Prison in California after former police officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 22.5 years for the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis.


“I want him to get every bit of it cuz that’s what they do to us… their kind of justice.” 
— Steven Serna, 41, White male, incarcerated 10 years

“Justice in its purest form should function as an agent of change. The real justice is that (there) is a paradigm shift in awareness that is manifesting as a result of this incident.” 
— Christopher Bryson, 38, Black male, incarcerated 14 years

“He should get 25-to-life. That’s what they gave me. Treat everybody the same.” 
— Aaron Jones, 56, Black male, incarcerated 27 years

“If he did something wrong, he did something wrong.” 
— Anonymous correctional officer

“I believe in the courts. He needs to be held accountable.” 
— Andy Scholl, White male, staff recreation coach

“I’m all for abolition. There’s no justice under our current system. He should get life.” 
— Phil Derosier, 41, White male, incarcerated 11 years

“I hope this puts law enforcement on notice that our expectations of them are that they preserve the peace and protect the public.” 
— Jesse Carson, White male, incarcerated 20 years

“He shoulda got more. Law enforcement always gets less than half the time than regular citizens do. If that woulda been us, we woulda got ‘Buck Rogers’ time. It’s sad.” 
— Brandon Thomas, incarcerated for 10 years

“Appropriate for someone in his situation. The Minnesota sentencing structure is based on  the worst charge. In California, he would’ve gotten more. He got lucky.” 
— Steve Waters, White male, incarcerated 9 years

“I expected it would be 20 to 25 years. As to whether that’s enough, I’m not sure. I didn’t follow the trial.” 
— Mark, 70, White male, incarcerated 10 years

“I think it’s ridiculous. It was too short for the crime. He and his buddies should be taken out back and shot in the head!” 
— Shawna, 55, White transgender, incarcerated 18 years

“I think it is too much. I understand it’s a life lost. Ten years would have been enough.” 
— Anonymous Hispanic male, 49, incarcerated 24 years

“In my opinion, it’s what the people want. If he would’ve gotten off, there would have been a riot.” 
— Chabo, Hispanic male, 50, incarcerated 8 years

 
Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. The Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned. The work is lightly edited but has not been otherwise fact-checked.

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Christopher Bryson

Christopher Bryson is a reporter for the Mule Creek Post at Mule Creek State Prison in California.