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BTR News – Seven of the twelve jurors who sat on the Derek Chauvin trial are speaking out about some of the behind-the-scenes jury deliberations.
On May 25, 2020, on a street in front of a convenience store, George Floyd would be murdered on video by cops in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Multiple videos taken by eyewitnesses were uploaded to the internet and circulated widely, sparking a renewed focus on police violence in the United States. The videos compelled more people to go out into the streets to demand justice for Floyd and demand an end to the brutalization and killing of US citizens by US law enforcement.
Derek Chauvin, the now-convicted murderer, was the first of four officers to go on trial for charges related to Mr. Floyd’s killing. Chavin was facing three charges. unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter during his trial back in April of 2021.
The seven jurors appearing on Don Lemon Tonight revealed that all jurors were in agreement that Chauvin was guilty on the unintentional murder and second-degree manslaughter charges, but the jurors were split on the third-degree murder charge. After some discussion, there was one moment that shifted jurors’ opinions from not guilty to guilty according to the jurors on Don Lemon’s show.
Chauvin was sentenced to 22 and a half years in prison for his part in the killing of George Floyd. The video of the killing caused empathic reactions around the world as people signaled solidarity with the protestors and activists seeking justice for George Floyd.
Many who saw the images of Chauvin nonchalantly kneeling Floyd’s neck 9 minutes and 29 seconds while the other three officers knelt on his back and legs, were disturbed by the behavior of officers showing no empathy as a human being begged for his life calling out for his dead mother with his final breaths.
The murder sparked calls within Minneapolis to reduce the city’s number of cops and to reimagine public safety under the lens of public health and not deploy armed officers to answer mental health calls to reduce unnecessary fatalities that impact the victim, the victim’s families, the officers, and their families and the wider community. An initiative was put forth to voters called Ballot proposal No. 2. The proposal asks voters whether the city charter should be amended to remove its requirement that the city has a police department with a minimum staffing level and if passed would allow the city officials to reimagine policing the community’s elected representatives.
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