1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

George Floyd Murder Trial

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by rocketsjudoka, Mar 11, 2021.

  1. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    38,480
    Likes Received:
    20,353
    Given how long this trial will take and how much information will come out of it think this might deserve a separate thread than the "Minnesota Riot" thread or any of the other threads following the killing of George Floyd.

    In the latest news today the judge as allowed a third degree murder charge to be added to the charges against Chauvin.
    https://www.mprnews.org/story/2021/03/11/chauvin-trial-jury-george-floyd

    Chauvin trial live: Judge reinstates 3rd-degree murder charge; 6th juror chosen
    Thursday afternoon proceedings have resumed

    3 things to know:
    • Third-degree murder charge reinstated

    • 6 chosen for a jury of 12, plus two alternates

    • Judge has ruled out descriptions of George Floyd as a “gentle giant” during the trial
    Updated 1:22 p.m.
    Judge Peter Cahill has reinstated third-degree murder charges against Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged in the killing of George Floyd.

    The Hennepin County judge said Thursday that he was bound by a Minnesota Court of Appeals decision in a separate case involving another ex-Minneapolis police officer, Mohamed Noor. The higher court had denied Noor's appeal of his third-degree murder conviction, saying it was an appropriate charge in that case.

    Cahill initially disagreed with the Noor opinion and denied the prosecution's request to add back third-degree murder. The defense has argued the charge doesn't apply because Chauvin's action was directed at a single person, rather than multiple people.

    After additional back-and-forth between the courts, Cahill decided he was bound by the appellate court decision in the Noor case.

    "When intent is directed at a single person — this is a legal principle that they've established now — then third-degree may apply,” he said in court Thursday morning. “Single acts directed at a single person fall within the gamut of murder in the third-degree."

    Chauvin also faces charges of second-degree unintentional murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s killing.

    6th juror picked; selection process continues
    A sixth juror was chosen Thursday morning as lawyers continued to work through the complex process of building a jury of 12 people and two alternates.

    The sixth juror said he wanted to serve because it's a big case. In his questionnaire, he wrote: “There was no reason for Chauvin to kneel on his neck for so long.” But he also said that none of it would have happened if Floyd had complied with officers.

    Two other prospective jurors were dismissed from the pool.

    A woman, described as a single mother of two children, said she viewed Chauvin "very negatively" and that she would not be able to "unsee" the video of him kneeling on Floyd's neck because Chauvin "looked so hateful."

    When asked by the judge if it would be hard to give Chauvin the presumption of innocence, she said it would.

    The second person dismissed said he felt neutral about Floyd and Chauvin and has strong support for law enforcement, but he thinks police can be second-guessed. He said he thought nothing positive came out of the unrest in Minneapolis, and that the protests were hijacked.

    Two jurors were chosen Wednesday, including a man who told the court he came to America 14 years ago, speaks multiple languages, works in information technology and is married.

    According to an in-court pool reporter, the man is Black. When asked how he felt about receiving a jury summons, he said he was “surprised” and “anxious” because it would be time-consuming. But he said he considers jury duty part of his civic responsibility.

    Defense attorney Eric Nelson asked the juror about an answer he provided on the written questionnaire about Floyd’s death: “You said, ‘It could have been me or anyone else.' Can you explain that a little?” asked Nelson.

    “It could have been anybody. It could have been you,” replied the juror. “I also used to live not far from that area (38th Street and Chicago Avenue in south Minneapolis) when I first met my wife. So that is why I said it could have been me. It could have been anybody.”

    Asked if he had any particular opinions about the Minneapolis Police Department or law enforcement in general, the man said he did not. He also said he felt somewhat supportive of both Black Lives Matter and Blue Lives Matter.

    “And you wrote that you believe ‘our cops need to be safe and feel and be safe to protect our community,’ ” Nelson read from the juror’s questionnaire. “Correct,” said the juror.

    “And again you would still stand by that proposition?” asked Nelson. “I do,” he replied.

    So far, the jury appears to include three white men, a Black man, another man of color, and a woman of color, based on observations from reporters who are in the courtroom on a rotating basis.

    Civil rights attorney and activist Nekima Levy Armstrong, who’s not involved in the case, is keeping a close eye on the jury's racial makeup.

    “We need people of color on the jury. We need Black elders on the jury,” she said. “We need people who have a history of understanding of the context of what’s happening in this country, and how what happened to George Floyd is a perpetuation of the lynchings Black people experienced, time and time again.”

    Judge won’t allow Floyd ‘character evidence’
    Wednesday began with discussions over words that might inflame and whether terms like "gentle giant" could be used in court to describe George Floyd.

    In morning pretrial business Wednesday, Cahill agreed to limit the testimony of an eyewitness who is also a mixed martial arts fighter. The man will be able to offer his observations that officers may have pinned Floyd for much longer than they needed.

    Those who witnessed the scene, though, won't be able to offer opinions about what caused Floyd’s death. Cahill ruled similarly on possible testimony by on-duty firefighters who responded to the scene. They will not be allowed to offer a medical opinion about what caused Floyd’s death.

    It appears there will be plenty of sidebar conversations at trial when testimony touches on the expression "blue wall of silence," a term used to describe the unwillingness of police officers to speak against fellow officers. Cahill expressed concern using the phrase could inflame jurors.

    The judge also cautioned he will not allow "character evidence," which he defined as any testimony that may describe Floyd as a peaceful person or "gentle giant." Murder trials traditionally allow family testimony showing the person killed was loved and valued.

    "As soon as you start getting into propensity for violence or propensity for peacefulness, I think then you’re getting into character evidence,” said Cahill. “That does open the door for the defense to cross-examine about his character for peacefulness.”

    Cahill expects opening statements for the the trial on March 29, although it’s still unclear if proceedings will be delayed by the questions around the possible reinstatement of third-degree murder charges.

    ‘Lying if they didn’t say that’
    Cahill is protecting the identities of people in the jury pool. There are cameras in the courtroom, but they are not allowed to show the potential jurors, who are identified only by number, not name.

    One juror chosen Wednesday, described by the in-court reporter as a white man, said he believes the criminal justice system is unfair to Black people and that they are disproportionately arrested for minor offenses. He indicated a favorable view of law enforcement and said the training officers receive makes them more credible witnesses.

    "There is obviously tense situations that officers have to incur in their line of duty, and some of that takes split-second decision-making, right? And is it right to question a split-second decision-making after the fact? And that’s tough to do,” the juror said.

    In other high-profile police killings, jurors have had to weigh officers' defense of being forced to make split-second decisions to shoot. This case is different. Chauvin was captured on video kneeling on Floyd's neck for about nine minutes.

    The juror said he's supposed to get married on May. 1. Cahill said he could blame him if the trial clashes with the wedding.

    One prospective juror shared with Nelson his deeply held beliefs for police reform and racial justice, but insisted he could be fair. Nelson wasn't buying it.

    "Doesn't it feel like kind of walking into the lion's den in a sense for you?” he asked. "I think for most anyone that's walked into this, they'd be lying if they didn't say that,” the man responded. He was later dismissed by the defense.

    Some in the jury pool were released after saying that security at the court building was intimidating or that they feared retaliation for their involvement with the case.
     
    Buck Turgidson and Os Trigonum like this.
  2. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    38,480
    Likes Received:
    20,353
    On an interesting side note a MMA fighter who witnessed the death of George Floyd to testify and also offer his opinion that the technique used on George Floyd was excessive. On a personal note I had offered as a Minnesota martial arts instructor to provide expert testimony or a brief. I didn't hear back from the prosecutors but this was before I had heard of that there was a direct witness who also had martial arts training.

    https://lawandcrime.com/live-trials...ns-use-of-a-blood-choke-hold-on-george-floyd/

    Judge Allows MMA Fighter to Testify at Trial About Derek Chauvin’s Use of a ‘Blood Choke’ Hold on George Floyd

    Prosecutors in the murder trial of Derek Chauvin scored an evidence victory Wednesday morning which could have broad repercussions for the case against the former police officer accused of killing George Floyd on May 25, 2020.

    Chauvin’s defense attorney, Eric Nelson, asked Judge Peter Cahill via a Feb. 8 motion in limine to prevent Donald Williams, a college wrestler and trained MMA fighter who just happened to be a witness to the May 25th events, from testifying “as to his training, experience and/or expertise in mixed martial arts, boxing or other training on the grounds that it is irrelevant and overly prejudicial.”

    Judge Cahill ruled that Williams would be able to testify mostly as the state requested.

    Nelson argued that Williams’ testimony would not comport with the Minnesota Rule of Evidence or other criminal procedure laws. He also argued there was no legal foundation by which to consider Williams an expert and that any testimony about Williams’ MMA-influenced knowledge or skills were further irrelevant because Minneapolis officers did not receive the same training Williams purportedly received.

    Nelson said in court Wednesday morning that Williams is visible wearing clothing bearing the name of the North Side Boxing Gym in witness video which shows Floyd’s restraint.

    The defense did not seek to prevent Williams from testifying about “what he observed.” Rather, the defense feared the state would seek to qualify Williams as an “expert” in the fields of mixed martial arts, boxing, wrestling, or jiu jitsu. The defense complained that it had received no documentation of Williams’ official histories with those endeavors.

    The state disagreed about the importance of Williams’ observations training and experience and argued to allow him to testify as to both.

    Prosecutor Matthew Frank said Williams started wrestling at age 13 and continued through his college years. Williams subsequently fought between 18 and 20 professional fights and trained with officers from various Minneapolis-area police departments. Frank said Williams’ knowledge of how to leverage body weight was highly relevant to his observations of what occurred to George Floyd at the hands of Chauvin and other officers on May 25.

    “As part of his training, they are taught choke holds, and that is a way of controlling another person by rendering them unconscious,” Frank said. “As part of that, [Williams] knows how it feels to be rendered unconscious, and they actually practice that in their training. They practice it in part because they have to know when it’s time to tap out . . . if it goes too far, somebody can be seriously injured. Somebody can die. That’s all part of his training and his experience in mixed martial arts.”

    Frank said the defense characterized bystanders to Floyd’s restraint and ultimate unconsciousness as an “unruly mob.” Rather, as it comes to Williams, prosecutors argued that someone with the requisite knowledge of exactly how to choke someone to death was on scene warning the officers of precisely what not do.

    “Williams . . . was so vocal because he knew all of this; he knew how serious the situation was,” Frank said. “He knew that Chauvin was killing this man . . . because Mr. Williams knew from 10 years of training and experience in mixed martial arts alone that this was very dangerous and was most likely cutting off [Floyd’s] blood supply and his ability to breathe.”

    Judge Cahill asked whether Williams used the phrase “blood choke” during the May 25 incident. Frank said that he did — and that he knew its ramifications.

    “Mr. Williams will explain that . . . a blood choke is where you . . . try to interfere with the blood flow to render that person unconscious. And he recognized aspects of that in what Mr. Chauvin was doing at the scene . . . that’s partly why he’s so agitated and so vocal at the scene . . . and that’s why he’s so expressive.”

    Frank said Williams also recognized Chuavin’s use of a move Williams knew as a “shimmy,” which is designed to tighten a chokehold and to render it more effective.

    “It can be seen that Mr. Chauvin is rocking back and forth to secure that hold —to secure Mr. Floyd to the ground,” Williams explained by referencing video from May 25.

    Judge Cahill said he would stop Williams from testifying about items which might become “a medical opinion” about what causes death. However, Williams “is entitled to say what his experience is, to explain what he meant by” what he said, and to explain “the shimmy . . . that’s what he thought he saw and that he thought it had gone too far.” Williams will also be allowed to testify that he thought he saw Chauvin using a “blood choke” hold and, based on his experience, Chauvin kept that hold on Floyd for far too long.

    Chauvin is charged with second-degree unintentional murder and second-degree manslaughter.

    The manslaughter charge requires prosecutors to prove that Chauvin’s “culpable negligence . . . create[d] an unreasonable risk” and that Chauvin “consciously” took the chance of “causing death or great bodily harm to another.”

    The evidence ruling will allow prosecutors to characterize Williams as a learned bystander whose warnings Chauvin should have heeded. Even though the state does not need to prove Chauvin intended to kill Floyd, the state does need to prove Chauvin intentionally committed an underling third-degree felony assault which in turn led to a death. Williams’ testimony will allow prosecutors to more thoroughly argue that drugs and other underlying conditions were not the true cause of Floyd’s death. Williams’ assessment — that the specific types of holds he witnessed Chauvin using on Floyd were known to him to render unconsciousness and death — will likely become a cornerstone of the state’s case.

    Also on Wednesday, attorneys confirmed that the three other former police officers accused of aiding and abetting murder will not testify at Chauvin’s trial.
     
  3. jiggyfly

    jiggyfly Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2015
    Messages:
    11,836
    Likes Received:
    10,104
    I have never understood how the paramedics have not gotten any scrutiny, from the video they never showed any urgency when they got on the scene and where laughing it up while Floyd was just lying there unconscious.
     
    edwardc, Sanctity, Nook and 1 other person like this.
  4. Reeko

    Reeko Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    26,249
    Likes Received:
    70,761
    they had better not F this one up...if there aren’t successful convictions with the heaviest of penalties, then oh my
     
    edwardc, Andre0087 and DVauthrin like this.
  5. DonnyMost

    DonnyMost clean your room bucko

    Joined:
    May 18, 2003
    Messages:
    42,687
    Likes Received:
    9,538
    They're going to have a hard time proving Chauvin did what he did "with a depraved mind and no regard for human life" given that he was probably trained and told by his government employer to do what he did.
     
  6. Reeko

    Reeko Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    26,249
    Likes Received:
    70,761
    Kneeling on the neck for 9 minutes is part of training?
     
    deb4rockets and Andre0087 like this.
  7. KingCheetah

    KingCheetah Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    47,206
    Likes Received:
    32,062
    This should go smoothly.
     
    Nook and Buck Turgidson like this.
  8. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    38,480
    Likes Received:
    20,353
    Paramedics and other first responders feel a comradeship with police. In a lot of cases this can be a good thing but can be a problem when a first responder does wrong.

    The same situation happened with Elijah McClain where the paramedics don't seem to be very concerned about his condition.
     
    jiggyfly likes this.
  9. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    38,480
    Likes Received:
    20,353
    Yes the technique used LEO are taught but applying it in that manner is the problem. LEO are taught to how to use deadly force but clearly it's not part of training to use it in every situation.
     
    Nook likes this.
  10. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    31,267
    Likes Received:
    18,622
    I mean there like saying that an officer is trained to use a firearm and therefore any instance of using a firearm would be difficult to prove an intent to murder without justification.
     
    Nook and rocketsjudoka like this.
  11. Trader_Jorge

    Trader_Jorge King of the D&D, The Legend, #1 Ranking

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2002
    Messages:
    12,233
    Likes Received:
    1,743
    I agree -- the hold was an approved hold by the police force and taught to the officers. It's what they are trained to do.

    I think jurors are also going to struggle with the toxicology report. A reasonable person would not expect someone to survive if they had eight drugs in their system, including meth and fentanyl. The medical examiner said that the fentanyl level in Floyd's system was at a fatal level. All sympathies to the family, but the drugs make this a difficult case for the prosecution to win, assuming it's a fair trial.
     
  12. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    31,267
    Likes Received:
    18,622
    The intent to kill is when Floyd is motionless and unconcoius and Chauvin still has his knee on his neck. The entire 5 minutes after while staring down bystanders begging him to allow them to check his vitals is when he wanted to end the man's life.
     
  13. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    31,267
    Likes Received:
    18,622
    Again, 9 minutes on his neck, 5 of which he was completely motionless and unconcoius with no desire to check for vitals.

    Just because he used a legal technique doesn't justify the murder. A cop is trained in firearms. Doesn't mean every shooting is justified.

    So the intent to kill occured the moment Floyd's was not resisting and was motionless. He did that for 5 entire minutes.

    Again, stare at a wall for 5 minutes and time it. That entire time people were begging him to allow them to check his vitals.
     
    deb4rockets and Nook like this.
  14. Trader_Jorge

    Trader_Jorge King of the D&D, The Legend, #1 Ranking

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2002
    Messages:
    12,233
    Likes Received:
    1,743
    With all respect, your argument just isn't grounded in the law. It's grounded in emotion -- which is exactly what our judicial system is intended to remove.
     
  15. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    31,267
    Likes Received:
    18,622
    4468"]With all respect, your argument just isn't grounded in the law. It's grounded in emotion -- which is exactly what our judicial system is intended to remove.

    Again, if his intent was to merely restrain Floyd he would immediately take pressure off his his neck the moment he stopped tensing up and was motionless. But nope. An entire 5 minutes he applied pressure to his neck while he lay motionless showing intent to harm.

    Also, how naive are you to believe that emotions don't away jurors. Of course they do and prosecutors and defense attorneys utilize emotion to swat jurors all the time.
     
    deb4rockets likes this.
  16. Reeko

    Reeko Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    26,249
    Likes Received:
    70,761
    Lol at trying to use drugs as Floyd’s COD. People have no shame

    immediate cause of death was brought on by a knee to his neck for 9 minutes...
     
  17. DVauthrin

    DVauthrin Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 1999
    Messages:
    8,829
    Likes Received:
    6,444
    There is a prevalent mindset in this country that police officers deserve to be above the laws they were hired to uphold and the citizens they were hired to serve and protect. It’s wrong and disgraceful.

    We need to start holding all police officers accountable for their actions, just like we would for an average citizen in this country. We also need to weed out racist cops from police departments throughout America and figure out a system to better identify racist tendencies during the hiring process of officers.
     
    #17 DVauthrin, Mar 11, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2021
  18. Reeko

    Reeko Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    26,249
    Likes Received:
    70,761
    agreed 100%

    trying to put Floyd’s death on drugs is so despicable, but also predictable

    Please tell me who would put their knee on someone’s neck for 9 whole minutes if they weren’t intending to kill that person. How long was Floyd without oxygen? And then you’re gonna say he died because of the drugs as if someone who was completely drug free wouldn’t also be in great danger of dying if a knee is on their neck for 9 minutes? Disgraceful
     
  19. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    31,267
    Likes Received:
    18,622
    The most damning part is the 5 minutes where his knee was on his neck while Floyd was completely motionless. The point of that technique is to restrain a resisting Individual. Floyd was limp and he was still applying pressure to the neck for an entire 5 minutes.
     
    #19 fchowd0311, Mar 11, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2021
    deb4rockets and Nook like this.
  20. Reeko

    Reeko Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    26,249
    Likes Received:
    70,761
    which is why the malicious intent is clear...He can try to argue that he didn’t intend to kill him, but what do u think is gonna happen if u put your knee on someone’s neck for that long? There is no way he can reasonably explain or justify doing that because there is no justification.

    it’s like me holding someone’s head under water for a very long time, the person dies, and then I say I didn’t intend to kill him and the drugs he was on is what lead to his death...gtfoh
     
    deb4rockets and fchowd0311 like this.

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!


    Upgrade Now