Derek Chauvin trial continues Tuesday

Modesto Morganelli
Aprile 7, 2021

The friend, Morries Hall, was in the vehicle with Floyd when police arrived, setting the stage for the attempt to arrest Floyd.

Police officers have rarely been convicted - if they are charged at all - for deaths that occur in custody, and the verdict in this trial is being seen as an indication of how the United States legal system will treat such cases in future.

A sergeant has admitted officers could have ended their restraint against George Floyd earlier than they did.

Speaking at a group prayer session outside the heavily fortified courthouse on Tuesday, Mr Floyd's brother Philonise Floyd, said "after we get the verdict and we get this conviction, we'll be able to breathe".

The chief of the Minneapolis police department has said Derek Chauvin violated policy when he pinned George Floyd beneath his knee for more than nine minutes. He said officers are trained to put their knee across a suspect's back or shoulders and use their weight to restrain them, but we "tell officers to stay away from the neck when possible".

Dr Lagenfeld told the court he believed that Mr Floyd's death was caused from a lack of oxygen, called asphyxia.

Mr Floyd's heart was not beating enough to "sustain life" at any point after his admission to the hospital, Dr Lagenfeld said.

Instead of protecting a fellow officer in what is sometimes called the "blue wall of silence", some of the most experienced members of the Minneapolis force - including the police chief and the head of the homicide division - have taken the stand to openly condemn Chauvin's treatment of Floyd.

Mr Arradondo said officers are trained in basic first aid, including chest compressions, and department policy requires them to request medical assistance and provide necessary aid as soon as possible before paramedics arrive.

Mackenzie, who trains officers in medical support, was asked by defense attorney Eric Nelson about "agonal breathing", which can occur in people in distress, such as a medical emergency.

Arradondo, the city's first Black chief, fired Chauvin and three other officers the day after Floyd's death.

Mercil testified that in his experience, it takes less than 10 seconds for someone to be rendered unconscious with a neck restraint.

The use of force, as it is known, lies at the heart of the prosecutors' strategy. They are trying to show that Mr Chauvin broke rules, and was a rogue officer.

Today a police chief has testified that the force used during Mr Floyd's arrest was a "direct violation" of police conduct. Experts have shared with Law Officer that there are two distinct possibilities for this.

Mr Nelson's main argument - that Mr Floyd died largely because of alleged drug usage and a weak heart, not because of the way Mr Chauvin treated him - will be ramped up in the coming days, as medical evidence about his death is presented.

Before testimony began, lawyers argued over whether a man who was with Mr Floyd at Cup Foods on the day of his death should be forced to speak during the trial.

Hall's testimony could serve as a "link in the chain" for the drugs Floyd ingested shortly before his death, leaving him open to a third-degree murder charge.

"Your honor, I can not envision any topic that Mr. Hall would be called to testify on that would be both relevant to the case that would not incriminate him", Cousins told Judge Peter Cahill during Tuesday's hearing, with the jury absent from the courtroom.

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