Choice of the jury by Derek Chauvin acknowledged: Who’re the jurors?

MINNEAPOLIS – A jury was selected to determine the fate of a former Minneapolis police officer who kneeled on George Floyd’s neck at nine for more than nine minutes Women and six Men who settled a case that forced a re-settlement of racial inequality in the US

After eleven days of questioning by defense attorneys and prosecutors, the jury selection was finalized on Tuesday when the 15th juror was selected. Twelve of the jurors will be deliberating, two will act as deputies and one will be dismissed when everyone else shows up for the opening speech on Monday.

The panel consists of six color judges, including three black men, one black woman and two women of mixed race. Nine jurors are white.

Floyd, a black man, died in police custody on May 25, 2020 after white Derek Chauvin pressed his knee to Floyd’s neck after a confrontation. Floyd was chauvinized on a Minneapolis street and shouted, “I can’t breathe” more than 20 times.

His death sparked protests worldwide and called for a change in the nation’s criminal justice system. Hundreds of demonstrators were arrested in the twin cities.

Some of the protests escalated into civil unrest; Shops and buildings were looted and burned down in Minneapolis, including a police station building.

Chauvin is charged with second degree murder, third degree murder, and second degree manslaughter. If convicted of the most serious charges, he faces a prison sentence of between 10-15 years and 15 years under the Guidelines for First-Time Offenders.

The lawsuit has generated heavy media coverage in Minnesota and nationally.

Most of the jurors saw at least part of the video of the tragic episode, which was recorded by a viewer and posted on Facebook. However, the jury said they could set personal opinions aside and judge the case solely on the evidence presented in court.

This evidence is expected to include some details of Floyd’s drug-related arrest by Minneapolis police in 2019. Prosecutors plan to launch two incidents involving chauvin to demonstrate that the former officer “deliberately attacked Mr. Floyd in a manner inconsistent with training.”

The eleven days of jury selection were dramatic at times, and some potential jurors got emotional. Some told the judge they were concerned for their safety if they were selected. Others said they couldn’t handle the stress and trauma of serving on the jury.

The defense tried to delay or postpone the trial after the City of Minneapolis agreed to pay Floyd’s family $ 27 million to settle a lawsuit over his death. This agreement was announced on the fourth day of the selection of the jury.

The judge of the Hennepin District Court, Peter Cahill, denied these requests. However, he dismissed two previously selected jurors and apologized to three potential jurors when they said they were affected by the settlement.

Alternate judges will step in if any of the 12 judges required for the process falls ill or has an emergency that requires them to leave during deliberations. However, the deputies will not be known until Cahill dismisses them, the court said last week.

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Here are the jurors serving on Derek Chauvin’s trial

The jurors come from a wide variety of areas. Some are very familiar with the case; others have not followed the months of developments.

The board consists of a chemist, a nurse who looks after patients with ventilators, a retiree and a social worker. Seven are in their twenties or thirties, three in their forties, four in their fifties, and one in their sixties.

Given the circumstances surrounding Floyd’s death – a black man who dies under the knee of a white cop – the racist makeup of the jury is a key concern. According to the court, nine of the jury identified themselves as white, two as multiracial and four as black.

Here’s a quick look at who’s on the jury:

  • A white man in his twenties who works as an accountant has a 6-month-old Bernese Mountain Dog and plans to move out of the state in late May
  • A white woman in her twenties who works as a social worker and was recently married
  • A white woman in her fifties who described herself as an animal lover with a passion for affordable housing
  • A white woman in her forties who works in insurance and says she loves the state of Minnesota
  • A black woman in her sixties who retired from marketing and said she loved hanging out with her grandchildren and volunteering with a youth organization.
  • A white nurse in her fifties working with ventilated COVID-19 patients
  • A mixed race woman in her forties working in corporate restructuring
  • A black man in his forties who works in management and has lived in Hennepin County for two decades
  • A white woman in her fifties who works in the healthcare sector and loves riding a motorcycle
  • A black man in his thirties who works in banking and trains youth sports
  • A white woman in her fifties who works for a nonprofit organization and is a single mother of two teenage sons
  • A black man in his thirties who works in technology and immigrated to the United States from Africa
  • A white auditor in his thirties
  • A woman of mixed race in her twenties who said she signed up to vote in hopes of receiving a jury subpoena on the Chauvin case
  • A white chemist in his twenties working on environmental tests and playing Ultimate Frisbee

The jury is more diverse than Minneapolis

The 15-member panel is more racially diverse than Hennepin County, where the jury resides, and Minneapolis, where Floyd died.

According to the court, the jury and deputy group consists of 60% whites and 40% blacks.

Hennepin County is 74% white and 14% black, according to the US Census Bureau in 2019. Minneapolis is 64% white and 19% black.

The racial makeup of the jury will change on Monday. Cahill said he would fire one of the chosen people if the 12 judges and two alternates arrived as planned. The courtroom doesn’t have enough space for 15 jurors, he said.

How do lawyers find an impartial jury? 12 judges must put aside what they saw in the George Floyd video

Important topics that jurors were asked about

Dozens of potential jurors have been screened by law enforcement and defense attorneys, including whether they could put aside their opinion on the case, their thoughts on social movements, and their opinion on the protests that were defined last summer. The review in at least one case included a review of a potential judge’s social media activities.

All jurors, including those selected, were asked about the video of Chauvin holding his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than 9 minutes. Some said they were impressed with the footage; others had only seen short clips. Few said they had not seen video of the fatal encounter.

“It was emotional. I decided I didn’t want to see it, “said one juror. Another said it was” too distracting “to watch the full video.

More:Derek Chauvin’s attorney says the murder trial is not about race. His own question suggests something else.

Everyone was asked about the Black Lives Matter and Blue Lives Matter movements. They offered a variety of opinions, from strong support to saying that both movements have become marketing programs for politicians and corporations.

One said Black Lives Matter has not always “taken the best action, but I believe Black Lives matter”. Another said he thought Blue Lives Matter was just “a thing” to counter the Black Lives Matter movement.

Many potential jurors expressed unfavorable attitudes towards Chauvin, and many said this was due to the video of Floyd’s arrest. However, the selected jurors said they would consider Chauvin innocent and base their decision solely on evidence presented in court.

Some of the interviews with jurors provided clues as to what might affect their verdict. One noted that he wanted to hear from Chauvin during the trial to share his side of the action. Another said she wanted to better understand police training and whether it was legal to put a knee on someone’s neck.

Historic settlement marks flash point in the selection of the jury

When attorneys sought to locate potential jurors in Derek Chauvin’s trial who were influenced by coverage of George Floyd’s death, the City of Minneapolis cleared a civil settlement with Floyd’s family for $ 27 million. This prompted the defense to renew their request to delay or postpone the trial.

On the fourth day of the jury’s selection, the agreement was reported during the lunch break. Ben Crump, the senior lawyer for Floyd’s family, called it the largest pre-trial settlement in a death.

The following week, seven jurors who had been selected prior to the announcement were called back and asked if this compromised their impartiality. Two were released after saying this.

At least three other potential jurors were fired for saying they couldn’t be impartial in the face of the settlement. Others said they heard about the settlement but it wouldn’t affect them.

Cahill denied the defense’s motions to postpone or postpone the trial based on the announcement of the settlement.

More:Minneapolis reaches a $ 27 million settlement with George Floyd’s family in an unlawful death lawsuit

More:The historic civil settlement for George Floyd’s family adds uncertainty to Derek Chauvin’s criminal case

The announcement “was incredibly bad timing and extremely detrimental to the defense and perhaps the state,” said Mary Moriarty, former chief defender of Hennepin County, Minnesota.

National Guard, police plan increased presence next week

While people protested Derek Chauvin’s trial almost every day, officials said Monday afternoon there had been no arrests related to the trial or reports of property damage.

Police officers said they would increase their presence next week when opening statements begin.

“It won’t be a dramatic increase,” said John Harrington, commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Public Security, at a news conference. “There is currently no information or information that would warrant a significant improvement in our attitude.”

He added that there had been no credible threats to the process or the Twin Cities area.

In preparation for the trial, the government center of the Hennepin district was surrounded by fences and concrete barriers. Nearby companies were boarded up.

Minnesota National Guard members are stationed outside the courthouse.

“We remain ready to respond and to ensure that bad things don’t happen,” said Harrington.

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