Floyd chauvinist lawyers make last pitch – Spectrum Information

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Officer Derek Chauvin “had to know” that he stole the life of George Floyd when the black man kept screaming he couldn’t breathe and eventually fell silent, a prosecutor told the jury on Monday as closing arguments began at Chauvins Murder trial.

Floyd was “just a man lying on the sidewalk, being held down and screaming in desperation. A grown man screaming for his mother. Human, ”said prosecutor Steve Schleicher as he tried to convince the racially diverse jury that Chauvin’s actions in knocking Floyd on the sidewalk with his knee were inconsiderate, unreasonable and criminal.

The final arguments began with the outskirts of Minneapolis against a recurrence of the violence that erupted last spring when Chauvin held Floyd’s neck for up to 9 minutes and 29 seconds while onlookers shouted at the officer.

The now-sacked white officer’s defense claims Floyd put himself at risk by using fentanyl and methamphetamine and then defied the police officers who tried to arrest him – factors which, along with his heart disease, led to his death.

But Schleicher described how Chauvin ignored Floyd’s screams that he couldn’t breathe and kept kneeling on Floyd after he stopped breathing and had no pulse – even after the ambulance arrived – and said he needed to “know what right.” under him was “.

“George Floyd’s last words on May 25, 2020 were ‘Please, I can’t breathe.’ And he said these words to Mr. Officer. He said these words to the defendant. “Schleicher said as he pointed to Chauvin:” He asked for help with his very last breath. ”

“The defendant heard him say that over and over again. He heard him, but he just wasn’t listening. He kept pushing it down, grinding it, flapping it, twisting his hand for 9 minutes and 29 seconds. He begged. George Floyd begged until he could no longer speak, and the defendant continued this attack, ”said Schleicher, using the word“ attack ”repeatedly.

Prosecutors must prove the underlying attack for the most serious charge of second degree murder.

Chauvin was “9 minutes and 29 seconds on him and he had to know,” said Schleicher. “He had to know.”

He also reminded the jury that the Minneapolis police took an oath to protect them with courage and said it may be difficult to “imagine a cop doing something like this,” but reminded the jury that that They were asked to put aside preconceptions in selecting the jury, police officers.

“George Floyd was not a threat to anyone. He didn’t try to hurt anyone. He didn’t try to harm anyone. It didn’t take an ounce of courage, given George Floyd that day. And none was shown that day. No courage was required. All that was required was a little compassion, and none was shown that day. “

Judge Peter Cahill opened the day’s court session by instructing juries to examine different types of evidence and telling them that they will examine each charge against Chauvin separately.

The anonymous jury is deliberating in a downtown courthouse surrounded by concrete barriers and barbed wire, in a frightened town heavily fortified by members of the National Guard, and just days after renewed outrage over the murder of a 20-year-old in a nearby building. year old blacks escaped by police is suburb

A few protesters gathered outside the courthouse on Monday as light snowflakes blew in the wind. “No breaths. No pulse. 3 1/2 minutes. Chauvin didn’t give up / got up, ”read a protester sign.

The 45-year-old chauvin is charged with second degree murder, third degree murder, and second degree manslaughter. All three charges require the jury to conclude that Chauvin’s actions were a “major causal factor” in Floyd’s death – and that his use of force was unreasonable.

In a second-degree murder, prosecutors must prove that Chauvin wants to harm Floyd, but not that he wants to kill him. Third degree murder requires evidence that Chauvin’s actions were “extremely dangerous” and were committed with indifference to the loss of life. For second degree manslaughter, the jury must believe that he caused Floyd’s death through negligence and consciously seized the opportunity to cause serious injury or death.

Each count carries a different maximum sentence: 40 years for accidental second degree murder, 25 years for third degree murder, and 10 years for second degree manslaughter. The guidelines for sentencing require much less time, including 12 1/2 years for both murders.


Webber reported from Fenton, Michigan. Associate press writer Mohamed Ibrahim contributed to this.


For full AP coverage of George Floyd’s death, please visit:

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