Wednesday, March 31, 2021
Home World the trial of police officer Derek Chauvin gets tough
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the trial of police officer Derek Chauvin gets tough

The trial of Derek Chauvin, accused of killing George Floyd on May 25, 2020, after kneeling for nearly nine minutes on the neck of the black forty-something, pinned to the ground and handcuffed, goes into hard this Monday. After the selection of the jury, the hearings begin in a tense context. The 45-year-old ex-officer who attended the careful jury selection is appearing free, having been released on bail last October, for a million dollars.

The importance of an impartial jury

It’s silent, and taking a few notes alongside his attorney as the officer, who was 19 years with the Minneapolis Police Department, appeared for two weeks. In this case, the one who risks 40 years in prison will be tried by twelve people, including four African-Americans and two of mixed race. A fact to be emphasized for several reasons.

First, because it is not representative of the population of Minneapolis, which is a predominantly white city. Then, because it is the legitimacy of the future verdict that is at stake: many activists have indeed made their voices heard so that the jury is sufficiently diverse. And the search for an impartial jury was a real challenge.

Some people drawn asked not to be selected out of fear for their safety, while others were automatically dismissed after announcing that they had already formed an opinion on this case. Almost all of the jurors have admitted to seeing, at least in part, the video in which Derek Chauvin rests his knee on the back of George Floyd’s neck. 8 minutes and 46 seconds which will obviously be at the heart of this trial.

A verdict expected at the end of April or the beginning of May

In this trial, the verdict is expected in late April or early May. The twelve jurors will have to decide unanimously, otherwise it will be considered null. This scenario, or an acquittal, could trigger new riots in Minneapolis, which had already flared up in late May.

The death of this African American sparked a historic wave of anger against racism in the United States and around the world. George Floyd’s ordeal was filmed and uploaded by a passerby. The images went around the world and brought crowds to the streets of New York, Seattle, Paris or Sydney to denounce racism and police violence against minorities.

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