Imprisoned Former Cop Derek Chauvin Appears Via Zoom to Face Tax Evasion Charges

Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer convicted in the murder of George Floyd, has pleaded not guilty to charges of tax evasion.

Chauvin appeared through Zoom for a brief hearing regarding nine felony counts of tax evasion in which he and his ex-wife Kellie were cited. They're accused of underreporting their joint income by $464,433 for five years. More than $95,000 that the former cop had earned through off-duty security work was also allegedly withheld from taxes filed between 2014 and 2019.

The investigation into the former couple's taxes began before Floyd's death, prosecutors told the Associated Press. Kellie Chauvin filed for divorce shortly after the killing, which sparked international protests and calls for police reform.

Accusations that the former couple were shielding their assets came after a settlement that would have given Kellie most of their money and property was rejected.

Chauvin is currently serving a 22 1/2-year sentence at a Minnesota maximum security prison. He was found guilty in April of the second-degree murder of Floyd. Along with the conviction and the tax evasion case, he faces a separate federal civil rights trial along with Thomas Lane, Tou Thao, and J. Kueng.

The next court case for the tax evasion charges has been set for Jan. 21.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

George Floyd Memorial
Black Lives Matter (BLM) protesters hold placards during a vigil on the anniversary of the death of George Floyd, in Brooklyn, New York, on May 25, 2021. Floyd's family appealed that day for sweeping police reform on the anniversary of the murder, as they met President Joe Biden at the White House. Photo by Ed Jones/AFP via Getty Images

A trial date has not been set.

The white former officer knelt on Floyd's neck for 9 1/2 minutes as the Black man pleaded that he couldn't breathe.

Sitting in a prison conference room and wearing a white T-shirt, Chauvin said little except "yes, your honor," to answer routine questions from the judge. Kellie Chauvin appeared from a different location.

Kellie Chauvin was a real estate agent and also operated a photography business. At the time, prosecutors said they owed $37,868 to the state, including unpaid taxes, interest, and fees.

A judge approved the divorce last February under terms that were kept sealed.

Chauvin has pleaded not guilty to the civil rights charges and is appealing his murder conviction.

Newsweek has previously reported that the city of Minneapolis voted to reject a proposal that would have disbanded the city's police department. Shareeduh Tate, a cousin of Floyd and president of the George Floyd Foundation, released a statement regarding the vote.

​​"I believe that there is as much of an opportunity for police reform measures to be pushed within the Minneapolis Police Department," she said. "The voters have spoken and they did not want to replace the MPD with a department of public safety. Now they must do the hard work to change their current system to ensure that officers don't murder another Black man in broad daylight with cameras rolling the way they murdered George!"

Derek Chauvin in Court
Former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin addresses the court as Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill presides over his murder sentencing at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis on June 25, 2021. Chauvin and his ex-wife now face nine counts of tax evasion. Court TV via AP, Pool, File