Derek Chauvin Defense Presents Opening Arguments in Trial Over George Floyd Death

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  • Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Derek Chauvin Defense Presents Opening Arguments in Trial Over George Floyd Death” – below is their description.

    The former Minneapolis police officer charged with killing George Floyd went on trial Monday, with prosecutors promptly showing the jury the video of Derek Chauvin pressing his knee on the Black man’s neck for several minutes as onlookers yelled at Chauvin to get off and Floyd gasped that he couldn’t breathe.

    In opening statements, prosecutor Jerry Blackwell told the jury that the number to remember was 9 minutes, 29 seconds — the amount of time Chauvin had Floyd pinned to the pavement with his knee last May.

    Chauvin attorney Eric Nelson countered by disputing that Chauvin was to blame for Floyd’s death.

    Floyd was resisting arrest, and Chauvin arrived to assist other officers who were struggling to get Floyd into a squad car as the crowd around them grew larger and more hostile, Nelson said.

    “There is no political or social cause in this courtroom,” Nelson said. “But the evidence is far greater than 9 minutes and 29 seconds.”

    He said Floyd’s drug use combined with his heart disease and high blood pressure, as well as the adrenaline flowing through his body, to cause his death from a heart rhythm disturbance.

    The medical examiner’s autopsy noted fentanyl and methamphetamine in Floyd’s system but listed his cause of death as “cardiopulmonary arrest, complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression.”

    Chauvin, 45, is charged with unintentional second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter.

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