Derek Chauvin has been at the center of attention after what he did to George Floyd. The words of the unarmed Black man who repeated “I can’t breathe…” who died under the knee of the Minneapolis policeman come back to hunt many with the stomach-churning video of George Floyd’s death. Derek awaits judgment, his trial marks a new judgment in the history of Black Lives Matter, and as witnesses present their side of the story.
After the video went viral all over the internet he has been already charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. His wife Kellie Chauvin who competed in a Mrs. Minnesota beauty pageant in 2018 announced that even though they were married for over 10 years, she wanted to divorce him days after Floyd’s suffocating death. On 20th April 2021, Derek was found guilty on all counts and handcuffed after Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahil announced the verdict.
Although many might be interested to know for how long will he be sentenced but that hasn’t been revealed yet so let’s get to know where his ex-wife is at the moment.
About Kellie Chauvin
She was born on 21st October 1974 in Laos and was an American former radiologist and beauty queen. Her family left Laos when she was just 3 years old. They fled to safety in Thailand and lived in a refugee camp in 1977. She belongs to the Hmong descent (an ethnic group native to Vietnam, Laos, and Southern China).
Kellie is still haunted by those memories when they had to leave everything and carried just a few possessions on their backs. She has also revealed that she stopped eating oatmeal because it reminded her of the dark days at the camp. She had no winter wear so she had to wear a boy’s jacket to keep herself warm.
After spending three years in the camp the family finally decided to move to Eau Claire, Wisconsin on one cold October in 1980.
She got enrolled in kindergarten in 1984. She didn’t know English but her classmates were far superior in their command of English. So she shared her experience by saying that “They say ‘land of the free’… but I still didn’t feel like we were free. We didn’t know English”. She expressed her feeling by saying “My parents didn’t want us leaving the house because they didn’t trust the world. You land into this brand-new world and you know what to expect, and so we were always kept inside.”
She won the beauty pageant
As mentioned above, she competed for the Mrs. Minnesota 2019 and succeeded to become the first Hmong woman to win that honor. One of her friends Sophia Xiong-Yang convinced her to compete in USOA’s Mrs. Minnesota 2018 in January 2018. She said in an interview, “I just knew that for myself. I was better than what people made me out to be”. “I know it took me a long time to realize that, but it’s never too late”, she added.
She used to get bullied for her looks and called ugly as a child. To make her home a “safe haven” for Hwong women going through difficult times, she volunteered to become a translator at local hospitals. She worked 13 years in the emergency room of Hennepin County Medical Centre in Minneapolis as a full-time position. In the beginning, she had only landed an internship but she worked as a realtor with RE/MAX Results after resigning from the hospital.
She was married to Kujay Xiong before Derek
She got married at an early age of 17 to her first husband Kujay Xiong. They had an arranged marriage so she barely knew him. According to her culture, she had to get married by the age of 18 otherwise her parents think that nobody will marry her.
Unfortunately, her first marriage didn’t end well as she had to bear abuse from her husband for 10 years until she got divorced. They had two children and after their divorce, she moved to Minnesota. By looking at her birthdate, she must have married in the year 1991.
Her Relationship with Derek Chauvin
Kellie met Derek while she was working at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. Dereck had brought someone for a health check-up before arrest. They fell in love and decided to get married in 2010. In a 2018 newspaper, she sketched out intimate details of their beautiful relationship after she was crowned Mrs. Minnesota.
To St Paul Pioneer Press, she said that her husband is just a softie under that uniform and he’s such a gentleman. She even added, “He stills opens the door for me, still puts my coat for me.” She even praised her husband by saying that after her previous divorce, she had a list of must-haves if she were to be in a relationship, and her husband fit all of them.
They had bought a townhouse in Windermere for an estimated amount of about USD 200 thousand in 2011. So, they moved to Florida, and over the years the market value of their townhouse has increased to over USD 249 thousand in 2020. They also owned another house in Oakdale, Minnesota, which they bought for USD 260 thousand in 2017, and sold for about USD 279 thousand.
She pleads not guilty to tax evasion charges
On behalf of the former Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin who is convicted of murder in George Floyd’s death, and for his ex-wife, a judge entered not guilty pleas on tax invasion charges. The next court date has been set to January 21 by Washington County District Judge Sheridan Hawley.
But the trial date has not been set. Derek is currently serving a 22 1/2 year sentence from the security prison at oak Park Heights for his conviction in April for second-degree murder in May 2020. Derek Chauvin had knelt on Floyd’s neck for 9 1/2 minutes as he pleaded that he couldn’t breathe. So, for the brief hearing, he appeared from the state’s maximum-security prison via Zoom.
Derek wore a white T-shirt while sitting in a prison conference. During the conference, he spoke very little except “yes, your honor”, to answer routine questions from the judge. Kellie was also present at the conference and she appeared from a different location.
Derek and Kellie were alleged to underreport their joint income by $464,433 from 2014 to 2019, including more than $95,000 for his off-duty security work. The allegations were made according to the nine felony tax evasion counts which were filed in July of 2020.
Prosecutor has revealed that they owed $37,868 to the state including unpaid taxes, interests, and fees and the investigation had begun before Floyd’s death. However, Chauvin has pleaded not guilty to the civil rights charges and is appealing for his murder conviction.
The real truth behind their divorce
Kellie Chauvin filed for divorce from Derek three days after the death of Floyd on 28 May. In legal court papers, it is stated that the reason for their divorce is an “irretrievable breakdown”. However, she didn’t seek any kind of financial compensation for the divorce. The filing also stated that she is fully capable of supporting herself. It is also revealed that both of them have waived their rights to “permanent or temporary spousal maintenance” from each other.
The divorce papers also state that even though Kellie is unemployed, she is self-supporting and does not require spousal maintenance. She has also wished to change her last name. But we don’t know if she will pick her previous last name May Thao or her first husband’s last name May Xiong.
How did she feel about George Floyd’s death?
The incident involving George Floyd destroyed their relationship. She felt devastated by Floyd’s death as stated via her Minneapolis. For Floyd’s family, his loved ones, and everyone who was grieving this tragedy, Kellie has sent her heartfelt sympathy.
Sekula Law Offices, PLCC made statements on behalf of Kellie Chauvin and her family and they wrote “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, his loved ones, and with everyone who is grieving this tragedy. She has filed for the dissolution of her marriage to Derek Chauvin. 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.”