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Gov. Brown, lawmakers react to Chauvin guilty verdicts


(Update: Adding Wyden comment)

Oregon's top FBI official issues statement prior to verdicts

SALEM, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Gov. Kate Brown and the Oregon House majority leader issued statements Tuesday shortly after the Minneapolis jury guilty verdicts against Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd:

Governor Kate Brown Issues Statement on Derek Chauvin Verdict

(Salem, OR) — Governor Kate Brown issued the following statement today:

“George Floyd’s life mattered. His death, at the hands of Derek Chauvin, shook our nation to its core. My thoughts are with his family today.

“Thousands of people last year, including here in Oregon, took to the streets to raise their voices in a clarion call for racial justice and police reform. A call for an America where Black Lives Matter.

“Today’s verdict is one step towards that goal. But it is only a single step toward police accountability. It is also a reminder of how much work we have left to do. We will dismantle the structures of racism and inequality in this country just as they were built, brick by brick.

“As a nation, we grieve for the life of George Floyd. And we will honor his memory by continuing to do the hard work to increase police accountability in this country. As we have seen in the last year, that process is not easy and change will not come overnight.

“The path to a more just and equitable Oregon begins with understanding. Understanding our state and our nation’s deeply racist history, and resolving to work together to build a better future for this generation and those to come.”

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., offered a statement on Twitter: "Real justice would be George Floyd being alive today. Today’s verdict is only one step in the march to justice. That destination will be reached only when accountability like today’s verdict becomes the rule of law."

House Majority Leader Smith Warner Responds to Guilty Verdicts in Chauvin Trial
SALEM, OR— Following the release of the guilty verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin, Majority Leader Barbara Smith Warner issued the following statement: 

"Today, a jury found Derek Chauvin guilty of murdering George Floyd nearly a year ago. While this verdict is a step toward justice in this particular case, it will not bring back George Floyd, Daunte Wright, Breonna Taylor, or any of the many Black men, women, and children who’ve lost their lives at the hands of police.  

"In the year since Floyd’s murder, communities across the globe have risen up to demand transformation and justice from lawmakers, to demand a change that will prevent more lives from being taken, to give full voice to the truth that Black Lives Matter.  

"In Oregon, we will continue answering this sacred call. We will continue pushing for transformational changes to state and local policing that will truly keep all of our communities safe. We will continue the work to dismantle the ongoing institutional and societal racism that oppresses Black and Brown people across Oregon. We will continue to work toward a future in which everyone is able to thrive and prosper, not just the privileged few. 

"Today and every day, Black Lives Matter."

Shortly before the verdicts were read, Portland FBI Special Agent in Charge Kieran L. Ramsey issued this statement to Oregonians:

"The FBI will always honor and protect your First Amendment rights, and we will do everything we can to protect your ability to gather peaceably, to speak, and to demand the change that you want. As we head into the days and weeks before us, we ask that you join together, using this time to help shape a future for all our children that is safe, free, and just.

"At the same time, our community faces the risk of allowing those focused only on violence to steal the moment for their own. The small groups of rioters causing destruction, committing arson, and engaged in other serious crimes on a nightly basis, continue to target Portland and elsewhere in Oregon.  Their violence and threats to tear down our community, must not be tolerated. We - along with our local, state, and federal partners - continue to work to make sure they are held accountable for the destruction they leave behind. Unlike us, those bent on violence don't believe that you should have a voice in the future that we share. 

"The days before us bring great promise - and great concern. We, collectively, have the chance to move our shared community forward. This once-in-a-generation opportunity should allow us to work together to build a more just society that both respects our differences and reflects our common values."

Article Topic Follows: Oregon-Northwest

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