Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin betrayed this badge when he used excessive and unreasonable force upon the body of George Floyd during a deadly arrest last May, a prosecutor said on Monday at a murder trial of the 2020 incident that born black lives matter movement.
Blackwell, told jurors that officers who wear the Minneapolis police badge pledge to never use “unnecessary force or violence.’
“You will learn that on May 25, Mr. Derek Chauvin betrayed this badge when he used excessive and unreasonable force upon the body of George Floyd,” said Blackwell.
However, Chauvin’s Defense lawyer Nelson said that the ex police officer was simply doing what he was trained for his 19 years on the force.
“Derek Chauvin did exactly what he was trained to do over the course of his 19-year career,” Nelson told the jury. “The use of force is not attractive but it is a necessary component of policing.”
Blackwell displayed a still image from a bystander’s cellphone video of Chauvin, who his White, with his knee on the neck of Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man in handcuffs, saying it showed Chauvin “grinding and crushing him until the very breath — no, ladies and gentlemen — the very life was squeezed out of him.”
Chauvin, 45, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. He faces up to 40 years in prison if convicted on the most serious charge.
The Minneapolis Police Department fired Chauvin and the three other officers involved the day after the arrest.
Chauvin’s lawyer continue by saying that the main cause of Floyd’s death, which the county examiner ruled a homicide caused by police restraints, was a drug overdose.
He used his 25-minute opening statement to describe Floyd’s drug use, his underlying health problems and a chaotic scene during the arrest.
“This was not an easy struggle,” he said, adding that the screaming of bystanders ended up “causing the officers to divert their attention from the care of Mr. Floyd.”
“Derek Chauvin did exactly what he was trained to do over the course of his 19-year career,” Nelson told the jury.
Blackwell warned the jury to ignore defense arguments that Floyd’s death was caused by an opioid overdose. He drooped his head and shut his eyes, feigning a stupor, telling the jury that someone overdosing on fentanyl would be unconscious, and not “screaming for their mother.”
“That’s not what an opioid overdose looks like,” he said.
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