Sports Prosecution wraps up case in Chauvin murder trial with tearful testimony from Floyd's brother
Jury Sees Graphic Video Of George Floyd Arrest In Opening Arguments Of Derek Chauvin Trial
Major broadcast and cable networks carried the opening arguments in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged in the death of George Floyd during his arrest in May. Special prosecutor Jerry Blackwell opened by showing a graphic video, running more than nine minutes, in which Chauvin is shown with his knee on Floyd’s neck. Floyd was heard moaning that he could not breathe and, “Please, please,” while onlookers shout at the officers. Then Floyd goes silent and unconscious, before an ambulance arrived. Floyd was pronounced dead about an hour later.
A cardiologist testified that George Floyd's death was "absolutely preventable." Another witness told the court that no reasonable officer would have used the force that was applied Floyd.
But as the prosecution wrapped up its case in the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin on Monday, it was Floyd's younger brother who provided the emotional testimony, breaking into tears as he described his older sibling's relationship with their now-deceased mother.
United States: a key witness of George Floyd's death refuses to testify at trial
© Kerem Yucel, AFP flowers adorn the place "George Floyd" in Minneapolis, while the trial of Derek Chauvin continues. Morries Hall, who was in George Floyd's car at the time of the drama and who he sold drugs in the past, invokes his right not to testify against himself. Tuesday, the trial of Derek Chauvin continued with the hearing of several police officers responsible for the training of Minneapolis agents.
"That's my oldest brother George. I miss both of them," Philonise Floyd told the Hennepin County District Court in downtown Minneapolis when shown a picture of his brother as a young boy with their smiling mother.
"He would always be upon our mom. He was a big Mama's boy. I cried a lot. But George, he loved his mom."
George Floyd died on May 25, 2020, after Chauvin, who is white, pressed a knee on the back of his neck for around nine minutes as two other officers held him down. He had been detained outside a convenience store after being suspected of paying with a counterfeit bill.
Chauvin isof second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in connection with the death of the 46-year-old Black man.
Trial Derek Chauvin: The Defense wants to prove a death by overdose for George Floyd
© AP the special agent James Reyerson questioned as a witness at the trial of the ex-police Derek Chauvin for the killing of throat Floyd, at Tribunal of Hennepin County in Minneapolis, April 7, 2021. On the eighth day of the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, the defense tries to prove to the jurors that it is not the ex-police officer but The drug that killed African American. On Wednesday, April 7, Derek Chauvin's lawyer thinks he has marked points.
Video captured by a bystander shows the handcuffed Floyd repeatedly saying he couldn't breathe.
The outcome of the high-profile trial is being closely watched after the video prompted widespread outrage, setting off protests over race and police brutality across the U.S. and around the world.
Judge Peter Cahill told jurors that the trial could wrap up this week with closing statements beginning April 19.
Playing video games
Philonise spoke about growing up poor in Houston: how they would play video games together; how his brother, who couldn't cook, would still make the best banana mayonnaise sandwiches and syrup sandwiches.
George, he said, was a gifted athlete who tried to teach him how to catch a football not by throwing it directly to him, but away.
George Floyd's Brother Gives Tearful Testimony: 'He Just Knew How to Make People Feel Better' (Video)
Philonise Floyd, younger brother of George Floyd, remembered his late brother as a "leader of the household" and a "momma's boy" who "just knew how to make people feel better" during his testimony on Day 11 of the Derek Chauvin trial. Tearing up at times as he reminisced about growing up with George, Philonise Floyd said members of his community all loved him. "People would attend church just because he was there," Floyd testified. "He just wasTearing up at times as he reminisced about growing up with George, Philonise Floyd said members of his community all loved him. "People would attend church just because he was there," Floyd testified.
Philonise shed tears as he spoke about their mother's death in 2018; how hurt his brother was that he didn't get to see her in Houston before she died.
"It hurt him a lot. And when we went to the funeral … George just sat there at the casket. Over and over again, he would just say 'Mama, Mama,' over and over … And I didn't know what to tell because I was in pain, too. We all were hurtin' and he was just kissing her, and just kissing her. He didn't want to leave the casket."
In some of the videos of his arrest, Floyd can be heard calling out, "Mama!" repeatedly and saying, "Mama, I love you!" although it's unclear who he was referring to, as court heard from Floyd's girlfriend that that was a name he used for her as well.
Philonise was allowed to give testimony as a "spark of life witness," a doctrine, in the state of Minnesota, which allows the prosecution to call on individuals who can speak in court to humanize the victim of a crime.
Defence begins Tuesday
The defence beings making its case on Tuesday, when Chauvin's lawyer Eric Nelson will try to prove that Floyd was, in fact, not a victim, at least not of his client.
Death of George Floyd in the United States: Place at the jury's deliberations
© Via Reuters - Jane Rosenberg The former minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin listens to the prosecutor Jerry Blackwell on this sketch of the courtroom of 19 April 2021. The jury of the police officer's trial accused of the murder of George Floyd retired on Monday, April 19 to deliberate on the responsibility of Derek Chauvin in the death of the African-American quadmeny, after a last day during which charge and Defense explained their arguments.
Nelson will spend the next days trying to convince the jury that Chauvin's actions were justified, that he did what his training taught him. And he will raise the possibility, as he has during cross-examination, that it was a combination of Floyd's underlying medical conditions, drug use and adrenaline flowing through his system that ultimately killed him.
On Monday, however, two expert witnesses for the prosecution attempted to punch holes in those theories.
Dr. Jonathan Rich, a cardiology expert from Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, echoed previous witnesses in saying Floyd died of low oxygen levels from the way he was held down by police.
Although Floyd suffered from narrowing of the arteries and hypertension, Rich said that was extremely common. Floyd also had a mildly thickened or mildly enlarged heart, he testified, which would be normal in someone with high blood pressure.
Indeed, Rich testified, Floyd had an exceptionally strong heart, and there was no evidence he suffered a heart attack on the day of his death.
"I can speak with a high degree of medical certainty that George Floyd did not die from a primary cardiac event and he did not die from a drug overdose," he said.
"I believe that Mr. George Floyd's death was absolutely preventable," he said.
Had Floyd not be subjected to the initial prone restraint, while he was handcuffed, and pushed face first into the pavement, "I don't think he would have died," Rich said.
As well, when he complained he couldn't breathe, putting him in a position where he could have started to expand his lungs again, "I think very likely would have also saved his life," Rich said.
On cross-examination, Rich agreed with Nelson that Floyd would have survived if he had "simply gotten in the back seat of the squad car."
But he added: "Had he not been restrained in the way in which he was, I think he would have survived that day. I think he would have gone home, or wherever he was going to go."
Court also heard from use-of-force expert Seth Stoughton who said no reasonable officer would have believed Chauvin's actions were "an appropriate, acceptable or reasonable use of force."
He said it was unreasonable as well to think that Floyd might harm officers or escape after he had been handcuffed to the ground.
George Floyd's brother express gratitude to Las Vegas Raiders for their support .
Philonise Floyd, the brother of George Floyd, expressed gratitude to the Raiders following backlash to the NFL team's "I can breathe" tweet."On behalf of our family, I would like to extend our deepest gratitude to the Las Vegas Raiders organization and its leadership for their support of our family and for our nation's ongoing pursuit of justice and equality for all," Floyd said in a statement shared by the law firm representing George Floyd's family.