One of the state’s lead prosecutors who helped convict Derek Chauvin of murder in the May 2020 killing of George Floyd has been appointed as a judge in Hennepin County, Gov. Tim Walz announced Tuesday.
Walz said Matt Frank “will be a remarkable judge who will approach this position with the understanding that justice is a process, not a result.”
Frank is an experienced attorney with the state Attorney General’s Office, and he helped lead the state’s prosecution of Chauvin and three other former Minneapolis police officers who were charged in Floyd’s killing.
Chauvin was convicted of murder and manslaughter and sentenced to 22½ years in prison. He later pleaded guilty to a federal count of violating Floyd’s rights and was sentenced to 21 years on that count, to be served concurrently.
Frank also helped broker guilty pleas for two other former officers on charges of aiding and abetting manslaughter. A fourth former officer has decided to let a judge determine his fate.
He is also known for winning a guilty plea in the case of Lois Riess, a Minnesota woman who became notorious for killing her husband in 2018, then killing a woman in Florida and assuming her identity before she was captured.
Frank is the second member of the Chauvin prosecution team to be named as a judge. In December, the U.S. Senate confirmed Jerry Blackwell as a federal judge in Minnesota.