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Chauvin’s Trials Day 1 and 2 Recap

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Day 1

Mon, Mar 29, Day 1, opened with protest and the late George Floyd’s family kneeling for 9 mins 29 seconds in front of the courthouse. 9 mins 29 seconds became a growing theme for the prosecution on day 1 of trials to prove Officer Derek Chauvin’s wrongdoing. Mr.Chauvin is charged with Second-degree Unintentional murder, Murder in the Third Degree, and Second-Degree Manslaughter for his involvement in Mr. Floyd’s murder.

This trial, for some, is a crude reminder of the echoes of police brutality that permeate the fabric of this country.

Lead Prosecutor and Minnesota’s first African American attorney general Keith Ellison opened up the hearing about the oath and the creed of a Minnesota officer.

“Sanctity of life and the protection of the public are the cornerstones of the MPD use of force.” Said, Mr.Ellison

Mr.Ellison concluding his opening statement with a promise of a new key witness, a dispatcher, who through a never before publicized  street camera footage, saw the incident and reported to the sergeant on duty

 

Following Mr.Ellison in his opening statement, Eric Nelson, lead defense attorney, claimed the death was due to previous heart conditions and narcotics in his system. The growing crowd around the officers distracted them from attending to Mr.Floyd.

Here is a quote from his opening statement:

“As the crowd grew in size, seemingly, so did their anger, remember there is more to the scene than just what the officers see in front of them, which the officers perceived as a growing threat.” Said. Mr. Nelson

 

Out of the three witnesses, the standout witness of Day 1 is 911 Dispatcher Jena Scurry. Ms. Scurry was called to the stands by prosecutors after watching the incident from a street camera from her dispatcher station. The footage showed an across-the-street view of the “Cup Foods” storefront where the entire incident took place. Ms.Scurry alerted the sergeant to let him know of what she called an “abuse of force.”

Look at a part of the exchange between Scurry and Prosecutor Matthew Frank:

“In your experience, you felt something was wrong enough to let the sergeant know?” said  Mr.Frank

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“Correct, if this was a form of abuse of force, I was calling to let the sergeant know.” Said Ms.Scurry

 

“My instincts were telling me that something was wrong, something is not right.,” said Ms. Scurry

Day 2

” Pretty much just killed this guy that was not resisting arrest,” said Donald Williams.

Those words rang across the courtroom as he teared up to the recording played back of his 911 call in the courtroom. Mr.Williams a Mixed Martial Artist at the scene of the accident, was the opening testimony of day 2 of the Chauvin trials. In his testimony, William explained he recognized the choke done on Mr. Floyd as a “Blood Choke.” The Blood Choke hinders blood circulation to the brain. Mr. William could be heard in the video yelling at Officers “check his pulse,” “he hasn’t moved.”

The bystanders who witnessed the incident with Mr.Williams shared their testimony. One was Off-Duty Firefighter Genevieve Hansen’s

“I identified myself right away because I noticed he needed medical attention, do to my training it did not take me long to notice he was in an altered state of consciousness,” said Ms. Hansen

In her testimony, she explained her inability to help Mr.Floyd as he layed on the ground, unconscious at the time because the dispatched officers did not believe she was an off-duty Firefighter.

Ms. Hansen visibly upset said, “ I was desperate to help and he was denied that.”

Frustrations grew during Ms. Hansen’s exchange with the defense after being challenged about her transcript as describing Mr. Floyd at first glance as a “small thin man,” she immediately replied,” It is hard to see with all the officers around him on his back.” The judge quickly intervened causing a brief back and forth between her and him. The Judge ends the heated exchange saying, ” do not argue with the court or the council,” as the juries left the room.

Video of brief exchange by NBC: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5C_CWpNjhA

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