SECURITY & CRIME REPORT

George Floyd: Judge denies request to move Chauvin trial from Minneapolis

A Minnesota judge overseeing the case against ex-policeman Derek Chauvin has declined to move the high profile murder trial away from Minneapolis.

Lawyers for Mr Chauvin, who is accused of killing unarmed black man George Floyd, argued he could not receive a fair trial after a settlement was paid by the city to Mr Floyd’s family.

Judge Peter Cahill called the timing of the $27m (£19m) payout “unfortunate” but said it should not delay the case.

Jury selection is continuing this week.

Mr Floyd’s death, after being held under the knee of Mr Chauvin, was captured on camera and led to racial justice protests around the world.

Twelve jurors have been selected, and two more are needed as alternates. According to the court, six are white, four jurors are black and two are multiracial.

Judge Cahill did dismiss two jurors earlier this week who had heard of the settlement and had said it could affect their impartiality.

Trial arguments are due to begin 29 March.

Eric Nelson, who is representing Mr Chauvin, had argued that the wrongful death settlement paid to Mr Floyd’s family last week had unfairly tainted the jury pool.

But the judge determined that moving the case away from Minneapolis would not necessarily lead to a more impartial jury.

“I don’t think there’s any place in the state of Minnesota that has not been subjected to extreme amounts of publicity in this case,” Judge Cahill said in his ruling on Friday.

Also on Friday, the judge ruled that Mr Floyd’s previous arrest, in which he was found with drugs, could be admitted to the jury as evidence.

Prosecutors argue that the previous arrest will be unfairly used by the defence to try to dirty Mr Floyd’s character.

BBC

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