The time is upon us. On Monday, jurors who must decide the fate of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the trial of the alleged murder of George Floyd finished the first day of their deliberations.
The 12-juror panel will resume deliberating the case on Tuesday morning.
The high-profile case was left in the hands of the jury around 4 pm local time on Monday, after hearing over two weeks of testimony.
Since the mainstream media has made this case about race, it is being reported that the jury is made up of six black or multiracial people and six white people. They deliberated for about four hours and then went back to the hotel where they are being sequestered for the final phase of the murder trial.
On Monday, prior to handing the case over to the jury, jurors sat through a full day of listening to closing arguments that the defense made the argument that Chauvin used “reasonable force” during the arrest of Floyd on May 25 of last year.
Defense attorney Eric Nelson also said that it would be “nonsense” to ignore other factors for Floyd’s death, like his drug abuse and heart condition.
Prosecutors, however, maintained that Floyd died because the former officer cut off Floyd’s oxygen while kneeling on his neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds during his arrest. The convenience store that accused Floyd of trying to use a counterfeit $20 bill called police to the scene. Experts testified that kneeling on the neck, which is what Minneapolis officers are trained to do when a suspect is resisting arrest, does not cut off a person’s airway. My own personal opinion is Floyd’s body would have started spasming involuntarily if oxygen was being deprived, and that would have been visible on the video no matter how many officers were holding him down.
“You were told, for example, that Mr. Floyd died because his heart was too big. You heard that testimony,” prosecutor Jerry Blackwell told the jurors.
“And now having seen all of the evidence, having heard all of the evidence, you know the truth. And the truth of the matter is, that the reason George Floyd is dead, is that Mr. Chauvin’s heart was too small.”
Nelson mentioned his concerns over the impartiality of the jury, thanks to the media attention given to the case. He also noted the inciting comments from Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA) who has voiced support for protesters to “stay on the streets” and “get more confrontational” in Minnesota.
“I just don’t know how this jury can really be… that they are free from the taint of this,” Nelson told the court. “Now that we have U.S. representatives threatening acts of in relation to this specific case. It’s mind boggling.”
Judge Peter Cahill called it “disrespectful to the rule of law and to the judicial branch” for elected officials to make comments like that on the outcome of the case and, in the end, the judge denied the defense’s request to declare a mistrial.
“I’ll give you that Congresswoman Waters may have given you something on appeal that may result in this whole trial being overturned,” Cahill said.
Waters did that to send a message to the jury. She should be expelled from Congress for doing it.
Derek Chauvin, 45, pleaded not guilty to all three charges leveled at him, including second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter.
Chauvin and his attorney spoke to Judge Cahill after he handed the trial over to the jury. I would love to have been a fly on that wall.
The former Minneapolis police officer faces up to forty years in prison if he is convicted of the top charge.
I previously wrote that if the jury is not intimidated by potential violence either way, there is no way they can convict Chauvin on any of the charges. Read my reasoning here.
The charges are separated, meaning Chauvin could be found guilty of one or more.
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It’s unclear how long the jury is expected to deliberate, and it could take hours, days, or even weeks.
Rich is a conservative syndicated opinion writer and owner of Maga-Chat.com. He writes about politics, culture, liberty, and faith.
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