Search Results for: Chauvin

The Chauvin Trial So Far

Featured image Here in Minnesota and around the country, all eyes are on the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the alleged murder of George Floyd. We are nearing the end of the prosecution’s case, so this is perhaps an opportune moment to assess what has happened so far. While not listening to every moment of the testimony, I have followed the trial closely. Much could be said, but »

Chauvin trial break

Featured image On Friday Minneapolis Police Department Lieutenant Richard Zimmerman took the stand. He is the department’s senior homicide investigator and its most senior officer period. He was called to the scene on the evening of George Floyd’s death. Having subsequently watched bodycam videos of the restraint of George Floyd, he found it unreasonable and excessive in relevant respects under department policy. Zimmerman is an extremely credible witness. He seems to me »

Chauvin trial day 4

Featured image The State opened the day with the testimony of George Floyd girl friend Courteney Ross. She discussed her relationship with Floyd dating to the day in August 2017 that he asked asked her how she was doing when she was waiting in the lobby of Harbor Lights to visit her son’s father. She recalled Floyd asking her, “Sis, you okay, Sis?” She said she wasn’t and he asked if he »

Chauvin trial day 3

Featured image Firefighter EMT Genevieve Hanson returned to the stand for cross examination by defense counsel Eric Nelson Wednesday morning. Did she show the officers on the scene identification as a firefighter? She did not. Nelson had nothing more for her. With a question or two more from prosecutor Matthew Frank on redirect — she believed George Floyd needed immediate medical attention, but the officers other than Tou Thao didn’t talk to »

Chauvin trial day 2

Featured image Minnesota martial arts practitioner Donald Williams returned to the stand and concluded testimony that began Monday afternoon. He reiterated his observations culminating in Floyd’s death: tremendous pain in Floyd’s face, his eyes rolling back in his head, his mouth open, drooling, gasping for air. All the while Chauvin kept his knee on Floyd’s neck, Williams’s “energy” did not let him feel he could intervene. After Floyd was loaded into the »

Chauvin trial day 1

Featured image I have been struggling with a bug that has sapped my energy and shortened my day yesterday. These notes are accordingly abbreviated. On Sunday I complained that the Star Tribune sought to bypass the issues in the case in the interest of framing it as a (racial) passion play. The Star Tribune is of course not alone in this regard, but is it really needed or illuminating at this point? »

Final Chauvin pretrial notes

Featured image At least for purposes of double jeopardy, the trial of Derek Chauvin for the alleged murder of George Floyd begins tomorrow with the empaneling of the jury selected to sit in the case. Opening statements will follow. I offered miscellaneous notes on various aspect of the case here (March 1), here (March 2, on “venue and the mob”), and here (March 7). I want to add to these notes this »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 12

Featured image In part 11 of this series yesterday I concluded that juror 116 — the deer hunter — filled out the profile of the optimal juror for Derek Chauvin. The prosecution exercised a peremptory challenge to strike him, as it has the few other prospective jurors who turned up with a neutral view of Chauvin and a a mind open to his defenses. Juror number 127 proved even better for Chauvin »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 11

Featured image When I was trained in as a trial lawyer defending companies in personal injury litigation, I was instructed by one of my mentors at the firm that we wanted to avoid post office workers on the jury. His advice became something of a standing joke. It may even have been a standing joke at the time I joined the firm, but watching voir dire in this case over the past »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 10

Featured image KTLK’s Jon Justice and Drew Lee have deputized me to act as their Chauvin case correspondent with regular appearances at the top of the show’s third hour at 8:00 a.m. (Central). We had a lot to talk about yesterday, including my preview of Judge Cahill’s rulings at 8:15. I thought some readers might find it of interest. During the segment I took up this AP story conveying an allegation of »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 9

Featured image If the day didn’t exactly begin with a whimper, it ended with a cathartic bang of a sort. Stick with me here. In between the whimper and the bang three more jurors were seated, bringing the total to 12 so far. We should have 14 soon and adjourn until opening statements on March 29. Before jury selection resumed Jerry Blackwell — one of the several outside attorneys contributing his services »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 8

Featured image Under the court-ordered arrangements for coverage of the trial, two seats are reserved for pool reporters inside the courtroom. The courtroom itself has been reconfigured to accommodate Covid-related public health recommendations. Participating media outlets rotate two reporters per day into the courtroom. These reporters provide on the spot coverage to members of the pool. Judge Cahill opened yesterday’s proceedings with a condemnation of “media” — one of Tuesday’s pool reporters »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 7

Featured image In the time reserved for motion hearings yesterday morning Judge Cahill heard defense counsel Eric Nelson’s offer of proof on George Floyd’s May 2019 encounter with the Minneapolis police. Floyd was high at the time and in medical distress. Previously ruled inadmissible, Judge Cahill indicated he would revisit the issue and took it under advisement. He indicated he would announce his ruling on Thursday, as I understood his comments. My »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 6

Featured image At the end of the motion hearing yesterday morning, defense counsel Eric Nelson expressed his grave concern over the effect of the city’s world-beating $27 million wrongful death settlement in the civil litigation resulting from the death of George Floyd. Nelson cited prejudicial comments made by Mayor Frey and the members of the city clowncil in support of the settlement. With seven jurors selected and released until the beginning of »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 5

Featured image The big news on Chauvin trial day 5 took place over at the Minneapolis City Clowncil, as our friends at Justice & Drew call it. The city settled the wrongful death case brought by George Floyd’s next of kin for the world-beating sum of $27 million. The Star Tribune reports: “Attorneys for the Floyd family hailed it as the largest pretrial settlement in a civil rights wrongful death lawsuit in »

Minneapolis city council sticks it to Chauvin

Featured image Today, the city of Minneapolis announced a $27 million settlement with the family of George Floyd. The family had sued the city for the alleged wrongful death of Floyd. The announcement comes as the trial of Derek Chauvin proceeds through its early stages. The court is in the midst of selecting a jury. Given its timing, the announcement looks to me like an attempt to prevent Chauvin from getting a »

Chauvin trial jury selection day 4

Featured image Late Wednesday the Minnesota Court of Appeals issued its final judgment on the interlocutory appeal of Judge Cahill’s order denying reinstatement of the third-degree murder charge against Derek Chauvin. Under the Court of Appeals decision, Judge Cahill was to apply the Court of Appeals decision in the Noor case as binding precedent. He heard argument on the reinstatement issue from both sides first thing Thursday morning and granted the prosecution’s »