Most Read
Image 01 Image 02 Image 03

Preview: Coverage of the Derek Chauvin Trial in Death of George Floyd

Preview: Coverage of the Derek Chauvin Trial in Death of George Floyd

It’s our intent to provide daily coverage of the trial proceedings, as much in real-time as circumstances allow, and based on observation of trial proceedings as they occur.

https://youtu.be/NjKjaCvXdf4

Welcome, everyone, to the official launch of my coverage of the second-degree murder trial of Derek Chauvin, criminally charged in the March May 25, 2020 in-custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, MN.

Tomorrow, Monday, March 8, 2021, begins the jury selection for Chauvin’s trial, with opening arguments likely within the following week or two, and presumably a verdict by sometime in early or mid-April.  It’s our intent to provide daily coverage of the trial proceedings, as much in real-time as circumstances allow, and based on observation of trial proceedings as they occur.

Throughout the trial I’ll be providing in-depth legal analysis in the form of blog posts here at Legal Insurrection, as informed by my own modest expertise in use-of-force law and based solely on the relevant evidence and law in this case, with links to the actual sources of evidence and law, as appropriate.  Many of you may have followed my coverage of the George Zimmerman trial back in 2013, and if so you can expect the same coverage insight and expertise in the trial of Chauvin, as well.

I also plan to use the social media platform Parler to provide live coverage of the Chauvin trial as it proceeds.  For those interested in following that content, I’m on Parler using the handle @LawofSelfDefense.

The Narrative of Guilt

In summary, the narrative of guilt for Chauvin is that while a Minneapolis police officer lawfully arresting Floyd, Chauvin placed his knee on Floyd’s neck with sufficient force and for a sufficient duration to cause Floyd’s death, knowing he was doing so in front of a crowd of people who were recording his conduct for all the world to see, and in a manner consistent with the criminal act of second-degree murder.  Naturally, the prosecution is obliged to prove the elements of this crime (or any lesser-included offense) beyond a reasonable doubt in order to obtain a conviction.

The Narrative of Innocence

In contrast, the narrative of innocence for Chauvin is likely to be something to the effect that Chauvin’s use of force—the knee on Floyd’s neck—was a lawful and appropriate use of force under the circumstances of making a lawful arrest of a non-compliant Floyd, who presented the appearance of experiencing excited delirium, that this technique was approved and trained by his department as a non-deadly force restraint technique under these circumstances, and that the technique was not applied in a manner that could be reasonably expected to cause death or serious injury to Floyd consistent with the lack of any indication of any trauma whatever to Floyd’s neck discovered upon medical examination.

Further, the narrative of innocence is likely to argue that the actual cause of Floyd’s death was not Chauvin’s knee at all, but rather the three-fold fatal dose of fentanyl in Floyd’s system—presumably because the drug was ingested by Floyd upon approach by the officers making his arrest in order to conceal the drug from discovery by the officers.

This narrative would hold that the ingestion by Floyd of the fatal dose of fentanyl would have inevitably resulted in his death regardless of any conduct by the officers involved.  This is particularly so given Floyd’s medical history of existing respiratory and cardiovascular disease, his COVID-positive status, and his poorly made decision to physically and forcibly resist lawful arrest for some 10 minutes.

It is also known that Floyd had a history of ingesting illicit drugs to prevent their discovery when approached by officers, and indeed he had previously been hospitalized as a consequence of precisely such conduct.  It is unclear at this point, however, if that history will be admitted as evidence at Chauvin’s trial.

Another Racially Energized & Propagandized Case

As has become routine in such cases, Floyd’s in-custody death and Chauvin’s trial have been racially energized by the usual suspects, including Attorney Benjamin Crump specifically and the social and mainstream media generally.  Their narrative is that this is another example in a long list of instances of white police officers murdering black suspects, a continuation of what they argue is well-established institutional racism of police departments in particular and America as a whole.  Indeed, the established social narrative puts Chauvin’s guilt as the murderer of Floyd as beyond question.

Remember the Zimmerman Trial & Be Informed

Of course, George Zimmerman faced a similar established social narrative when his trial began on second-degree murder charges for the killing of Trayvon Martin, and after fourteen months of investigation and trial he was acquitted of all charges by a racially diverse jury in a matter of hours.

Much of the world was shocked by the acquittal of Zimmerman, because they’d been propagandized by the social media narrative to be utterly convinced of his guilt.  Those of you who followed my day-by-day analysis of that trial, however, fully understood that not only was the prosecution’s case against Zimmerman weak, there was literally no evidence in the case inconsistent with Zimmerman’s narrative of lawful self-defense.  For the well-informed, Zimmerman’s acquittal came as a relief, but not a surprise.

Will we see the same outcome in the trial of Chauvin?  Follow my daily coverage and analysis of the trial right here at Legal Insurrection to find out!

Prior Analysis & Background

I began analysis of this case soon after Floyd’s death over at my own Law of Self Defense web site, and anyone interested in reading that content, which includes far more details than I can reasonably include in this initial “launch” post, can gain free access by clicking the relevant links below:

After Action Analysis (George Floyd): May 27, 2020

NEWS: Officer Chauvin Charged with Murder of George Floyd (May 29, 2020)

Did Baden Autopsy Find Clinical Evidence Floyd Killed by Asphyxia? No (June 1, 2020)

News/Q&A (George Floyd): June 4, 2020

George Floyd: Criminal Complaints & Medical Examiner Report (June 5, 2020)

Media Slowly Sensing Perhaps Floyd’s Death Maybe Not A Murder? (March 3, 2021)

OK, folks, buckle up, gird your loins, and all that good stuff, and get ready for our coverage of the second-degree murder trial of Derek Chauvin, starting substantively tomorrow with the beginning of jury selection.

–Andrew

Attorney Andrew F. Branca
Law of Self Defense LLC

Attorney Andrew F. Branca’s legal practice has specialized exclusively in use-of-force law for thirty years.  Andrew provides use-of-force legal consultancy services to attorneys across the country, as well as near-daily use-of-force law insight, expertise, and education to lawyers and non-lawyers alike in the form of blog posts, video, and podcasts, through the Law of Self Defense Membership service.  If this kind of content is of interest to you, try out our two-week Membership trial for a mere 99 cents, with a 200% no-question- asked money-back guarantee, here:  Law of Self Defense Membership Trial.

DONATE

Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.

Comments

JusticeDelivered | March 7, 2021 at 6:34 pm

“drug was ingested by Floyd upon approach by the officers making his arrest in order to conceal the drug from discovery by the officers.”

It is amazing that someone is dumb enough to ingest that quantity of drugs. Most certainly this is not the first time a criminal has done this.

I bet if a white did so, hardly anyone would notice or care when they died.

    Ripper70 in reply to JusticeDelivered. | March 7, 2021 at 6:56 pm

    Apparently, it’s not the first time GF had done it according to the article.

    “It is also known that Floyd had a history of ingesting illicit drugs to prevent their discovery when approached by officers, and indeed he had previously been hospitalized as a consequence of precisely such conduct. It is unclear at this point, however, if that history will be admitted as evidence at Chauvin’s trial.

      smalltownoklahoman in reply to Ripper70. | March 8, 2021 at 5:18 am

      Yes and if the defense can get that admitted into the court then that will be a huge win in Chauvin’s favor. The autopsy record alone will be damaging to the prosecutor’s case but pair this with it and Floyd resisting arrest for 10 minutes (time which could have been spent getting him to a hospital) and it’s going to be hard to argue against Floyd did himself in with his own behavior. Intentionally? No, he just panicked and made a foolish mistake, especially with something as dangerous as fentanyl.

Can’t wait. Going to be an interesting few weeks. Passed along links to this upcoming coverage to all my email friends.

    That’s awesome, thank you! Andrew is amazing, and we are so excited about his coverage of this case.

      Yes it is awesome! I also appreciate Andrew’s coverage of the case and, like everyone else, am excited to read everything he writes. He also generates a lot comments which makes for good reading.

      Colonel Travis in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 7, 2021 at 10:46 pm

      You guys introduced me to him with the Zimmerman coverage. I can’t tell you how thankful I am, Andrew Branca has helped me more than anyone else in my personal knowledge of self-defense law. Joined his site, bought his stuff, it’s worth every penny if you’re a gun owner.

No way there police get justice

No way

This was the pivotal case for months of BLM

Now, they would have made one up if needed, but this jury will be terrified to do the right thing because, as President Trump said, they are coming for us…

    Milhouse in reply to gonzotx. | March 8, 2021 at 3:50 pm

    It is of course a concern, but you have no basis for saying “no way”. All you need is a few jurors who are not biased to either side, with the courage to shame their colleagues into doing the same. And a judge willing to exhort them hard to set everything aside and do their duty. That’s a lot to ask for, but it’s very far from impossible.

James B. Shearer | March 7, 2021 at 7:07 pm

What’s the status of the third degree murder charge that the judge threw out and the prosecution was trying to get re-instated? I believe there was a recent appeals court decision supporting the prosecution. Could this delay the trial?

    paralegal in reply to James B. Shearer. | March 7, 2021 at 7:32 pm

    This is an interesting question. Judge Cahill gave two reasons for denying the original motion to amend. First, the Judge said the Noor opinion was not precedential yet. Keith Ellison appealed this and won. The second reason is far more interesting. Cahill also opined that Noor was incorrectly decided. I agree with the trial judge. The State Supreme Court has granted review of Noor.

    “Third-degree murder occurs when death is caused without intent to kill and “excludes a situation where the animus of defendant is directed toward one person only.” State v. Hanson, 286 Minn. 317, 328-29, 176 N.W.2d 607, 614-15 (1970); Stiles v. State (Minn. 2003) 664 N.W.2d 315, 321

    The Noor decision defies a long line of Minnesota Supreme Court cases as indicated above. The problem arises if Chauvin and the other officers are tried based on the Noor decision and then the State Supreme Court comes down and reverses Noor which seems quite likely.

      James B. Shearer in reply to paralegal. | March 7, 2021 at 7:50 pm

      “The Noor decision defies a long line of Minnesota Supreme Court cases as indicated above. ..”

      I didn’t follow the Noor trial but couldn’t you argue that Noor fired a wild shot without properly identifying a target and therefore wasn’t displaying animus towards any specific person? Of course this would not apply to the Chauvin case.

        paralegal in reply to James B. Shearer. | March 7, 2021 at 8:10 pm

        Absolutely. But 1) that’s not what the Intermediate Court of Appeal held and 2) that is the factual distinction that Keith Ellison and Kaytal are trying to obscure.

        This is the objectionable text.

        “But other supreme court caselaw indicates that a third-degree murder conviction may be based on conduct directed at a single person, and even a targeted person.” State v. Noor (Minn. Ct. App., Feb. 1, 2021, No. A19-1089) 2021 WL 317740, at *7

        This is inconsistent with Stiles v. State (Minn. 2003) 664 N.W.2d 315, 321 cited in the prior comment and the 2017 Minnesota State Supreme Court decision in State v. Zumberge

        “We have made clear that the statute covers only acts “committed without special regard to their effect on any particular person or persons; the act must be committed without a special design upon the particular person or persons with whose murder the accused is charged.”

        State v. Zumberge (Minn. 2017) 888 N.W.2d 688, 698

        It is inconsistent with the 2006 Minnestota State Supreme Court decision in State v. Barnes (Minn. 2006) 713 N.W.2d 325, 331

        The statutes can also be distinguished because the mens rea elements have a different focus. Domestic abuse murder requires that the extreme indifference be directed at the specific person. Depraved mind murder, on the other hand, cannot occur where the defendant’s actions were focused on a specific person:

        State v. Barnes (Minn. 2006) 713 N.W.2d 325, 331

      Milhouse in reply to paralegal. | March 8, 2021 at 3:53 pm

      The second reason is far more interesting. Cahill also opined that Noor was incorrectly decided. I agree with the trial judge. The State Supreme Court has granted review of Noor.

      But the supreme court won’t hear the Noor appeal until June, and until then the appellate court’s incorrect decision is binding on the judge. He cannot reject it just because he thinks the supreme court will reverse it; he has to wait for that to happen. Andrew McCarthy speculates that he may delay the trial for this reason.

rabid wombat | March 7, 2021 at 7:15 pm

Fentanyl is a known respiratory depressant. The fact that Floyd was complaining of respiratory distress (“I can’t breathe”) prior to restraint is indicative to the poisoning. He was moving air, but his body was not making the leap from air in his lungs to O2 in his blood. With the elevated levels of Fentanyl, he was a dead man walking. The claim of CPR would have saved him does not fly…if O2 is not conveyed into the blood during respiration, it will not occur in CPR.

    JustSayN2O in reply to rabid wombat. | March 7, 2021 at 11:28 pm

    Physician here. Rabid Wombat is incorrect on two accounts.

    First, individuals succumbing to an opioid overdose do not say, “I can’t breathe”. Why, because they are narcotized. They are heavily sedated. They are not conscious enough to know that their respiratory drive has been pharmacologically impaired by the opioid. They are unaware of their surroundings, they are unaware of their slow and shallow respirations, and they are unaware of their decreasing arterial oxygen saturation. I know. I’m an anesthesiologist who has administered opioids to more than 10,000 people undergoing surgery during the past 30+ years. Nobody given a large dose of fentanyl or any other opioid says, “I can’t breathe”. They just quietly slow down and/or discontinue their breathing (if not intubated or other necessary measure immediately employed).

    People who say, “I can’t breathe” are suffering a different problem, and there are many possibilities, but opioid overdose is not one of them. Here are several examples of what may prevent somebody from breathing:

    – obstruction of the airway* (e.g., foreign body within airway, edematous airway due to massive infection or allergic reaction)
    – external compression of the airway (e.g., neck or chest constriction by a very large snake)
    – internal compression of the airway (e.g., tension pneumothorax, tumor)
    – respiratory muscle dysfunction or paralysis (e.g., cervical spinal cord injury, neuro-muscular blocking drug or poison)

    Secondly, opioids such as fentanyl:

    — do not prevent transfer of oxygen from pulmonary alveoli to pulmonary vein,
    — do not prevent uptake of oxygen to circulating hemoglobin, and
    — do not prevent utilization of oxygen by individual cells.

    There are multiple potential causes prevention of transfer of oxygen from pulmonary alveoli to pulmonary vein including lung injury. Carbon monoxide poisoning will prevent uptake of oxygen to circulating hemoglobin. Cyanide poisoning will prevent utilization of oxygen by cells.

    If Floyd were suffering respiratory depression secondary to opioid overdose, then CPR would have sustained his life until endotracheal intubation and naloxone administration.

    I read a lot about the law, including my copy of Mr. Branca’s book. That does not make me an expert of law; not even close. Please, Rabid Wombat, do not complicate the picture by providing medically incorrect information.

    I rarely comment on LI.com, but this one is critically necessary in order to forestall dissemination of false medical information.

    _____________
    * for these examples, I define ‘airway’ as mouth or nose to lungs.

      drednicolson in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 7, 2021 at 11:39 pm

      In addition to fentanyl, there was also a considerable dose of methamphetamine. Be sure to take that into account.

      thomcad in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 4:22 am

      If you have a colleague who is an Anesthegeolist ask him about fentanyl induced “wooden chest syndrome”.
      Apparently few people outside of this medical speciality are aware of it, but I have a hunch it is going to be infamous after this trial.

        JustSayN2O in reply to thomcad. | March 9, 2021 at 9:39 pm

        This phenomenon is well-known; we refer to it as ‘chest wall rigidity’.

        As described earlier, my practice extends back 30+ years, >10k anesthetized patients. Nobody with opioid-induced chest wall rigidity will be saying, “I can’t breathe.” They’ll already be significantly sedated if and when that occurs. They won’t know their chest wall is rigid and impairing their breathing. They will not feel distress and complain about it because they are heavily sedated due to the opioid’s effect in the brain.

        If not managed immediately and correctly (typically endotracheal intubation and naloxone administration if in the ambulance or emergency department following an overdose, or intubation plus skeletal muscle relaxant medication administration if in the operating room just prior to surgery), they will die a peaceful death from anoxia without knowing it

        Consider alternate explanations for why Mr. Floyd stated that he could not breathe.

          thomcad in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 10, 2021 at 11:24 pm

          0JustSayN2O …thanks for the reply and information. I’m left wondering if this situation might be different enough from your experience to explain how wooden chest syndrome, or chest wall rigidity might still be possible.

          I doubt whether many of your patients had a tolerance of opiods born of years of recreational use, including at least one overdose. And I bet fewer still were simultaneously administered a powerful stimulant like methamphetamine.

          I bring this up because I’ve read that WCS is possible at any dose of Fentanyl, including dosages previously tolerated, and dosages insufficient to cause loss of consciousness,. I wonder if this could be especially true when the subject has a high tolerance and has taken Meth..

          I’ve also read “that naloxone may be ineffective against centrally mediated noradrenergic and cholinergic effects of F/FAs, which clinically manifest as severe muscle rigidity and airway compromise (e.g., wooden chest syndrome” Regardless, that would seem to be an incredibly tough diagnosis for an EMT, who unlike you, does not know exactly what drugs are in their patients system.

          Anyway, this case won’t be won or lost because of folks discussing it on an internet forum.

      mark311 in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 6:50 am

      Thank you for your comment, good to have your knowledgeable perspective

      Paul In Sweden in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 7:12 am

      We all need to do what we can to stop dissemination of false medical information. With that in mind:

      [No chest wall soft tissue injuries, rib fractures (other than a single rib fracture from CPR), vertebral column in juries, or visceral injuries

      Moreover, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, among the most common characteristics of a fentanyl overdose is “foaming at the mouth … and confusion or strange behavior before the person became unresponsive” (emphasis added). In short, Floyd’s foaming at the mouth, incoherence, physical incapacity, non-compliant behavior, breathing difficulty, and rapid downward spiral into unconsciousness and death are fully explained by the toxicological evidence that he had ingested a massively lethal overdose of fentanyl mixed with a smaller dose of similarly dangerous and debilitating methamphetamine. In other words, by the time he first encountered the police, Floyd had already rendered himself a dead man walking and was only minutes away from expiring.]

      We know from the video transcripts that Floyd, in addition to complaining about being unable to breathe while he was still upright, repeated that complaint for a matter of minutes while he was on the ground and being restrained by police. But Floyd remained conscious and complaining for several minutes. How can that be if Chauvin’s knee had cut off the flow of blood to Floyd’s brain? If the police had cut off the flow of blood and oxygen to Floyd’s brain, he would have lost consciousness within seconds, not minutes. (See Nichols, Larry, Law Enforcement Patrol Operations: Police Systems and Practices, McCutcheon Publishing Company, 1995.)

      So why couldn’t Floyd breathe, and how did he die? The clear answers to those questions are to be found in his toxicology report, which overwhelmingly and unerringly supports the conclusion that Floyd’s breathing difficulties and death were the direct and undeniable result of his ingestion of fentanyl mixed with methamphetamine.

      When Floyd arrived at the hospital, his blood was drawn. According to the toxicology report, postmortem testing of that blood established the presence of, among other drugs, “Fentanyl 11 ng/mL” (nanograms per milliter). In that regard, tucked away in the report’s “Reference Comments” is this: “Signs associated with fentanyl toxicity include severe respiratory depression, seizures, hypotension, coma and death. In fatalities from fentanyl, blood concentrations are variable and have been reported as low as 3 ng/mL.”

      Got that? According to the toxicology report, which is central to the prosecution’s case, at 11 ng/mL, Floyd had over three times the potentially lethal 3 ng/mL dose of fentanyl in his bloodstream when he arrived unresponsive at the hospital.

      Similarly, the toxicology report also disclosed the presence of methamphetamine, which it states is “capable of causing hallucinations, aggressive behavior and irrational reactions” as well as “restlessness, confusion, hallucinations, circulatory collapse and convulsions.”

      Defense counsel should blow up those sections of the toxicology report to Mount Rushmore–size proportions, hang them on the courtroom wall, and read them every five minutes to the jury. They more than explain Floyd’s bizarre behavior, inability to stand, difficulty walking, and complaints about being unable to breathe while sitting, standing, and lying on the ground.

      Moreover, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, among the most common characteristics of a fentanyl overdose is “foaming at the mouth … and confusion or strange behavior before the person became unresponsive” (emphasis added). In short, Floyd’s foaming at the mouth, incoherence, physical incapacity, non-compliant behavior, breathing difficulty, and rapid downward spiral into unconsciousness and death are fully explained by the toxicological evidence that he had ingested a massively lethal overdose of fentanyl mixed with a smaller dose of similarly dangerous and debilitating methamphetamine. In other words, by the time he first encountered the police, Floyd had already rendered himself a dead man walking and was only minutes away from expiring.

      So, who killed George Floyd? He did.

      The only crime here has been the prosecution’s shockingly incompetent investigation of Floyd’s death. In charging and continuing to prosecute these defendants, Minnesota’s attorney general has failed to take into account the most important and material evidence in the case, i.e., the fact that Floyd’s inability to breathe started while he was still upright and mobile and the scientific proof that his death was the direct and inescapable result of a massively fatal overdose of a powerful and dangerous drug known to cause, in the words of the toxicology report, “severe respiratory depression, seizures, hypotension, coma and death.”

      –Who Killed George Floyd? | The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
      –https://spectator.org/george-floyd-death-toxicology-report/

      Edward in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 8:58 am

      I’m no medical expert, I don’t play one on TV and I didn’t stay at a Holiday Inn (whichever). It has been reported that Floyd’s lungs contained a significant amount of liquid (attested to by coroner’s reported weight of lung tissue IIRC). It has also been reported that Fentanyl OD has been known to result in this sort of lung damage. Certainly an opioid OD alone would most likely lead to the subject simply falling asleep never to awake.

      With allegations of Floyd’s use of other illicit drugs in combination with Fentanyl, perhaps experience with opioid use in anesthesia does not sufficiently inform as to reaction to street use of an alleged triple dose of Fentanyl, which may have been of questionable content itself, with one or more other illegal substances in combination with heart disease and respiratory problems?

      In any event the coroner’s decision is that Floyd did not die of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation

      Joe-dallas in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 9:06 am

      Just say n2o

      Can you clarify. My understanding is that the Fetanyl caused significant fluid and/or foam in the lungs with greatly inhibited his breathing.

      second question – what is the typical length of time for ingestion of fetanyl until the fluid/foam builds up into the lungs?

        JustSayN2O in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 9, 2021 at 9:56 pm

        Both fentanyl and methamphetamine can cause acute pulmonary edema. Fluid in the lungs can impair breathing.

        The second question is more complicated. Fentanyl “ingested” (eaten) will take longer to be absorbed via the small intestine than fentanyl kept in the mouth to be absorbed via oral mucosa. Oral transmucosal fentanyl lozenges are sometimes prescribed for severe pain due to malignancy. Oral fentanyl administration begins its pharmacologic effect rapidly, in minutes.

        Time to onset of opioid-induced side effects is variable and is influenced by, among other factors:

        drug dose
        route of administration
        patient weight
        prior exposure history (is individual opioid-tolerant or opioid-naive)

      Salsassin in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 9:22 am

      I would be interested in how compromised he was with COVID. As a COVID survivor, I had lingering O2 level problems as well as incapacity to fully inhale into my lungs. That alone could have compromised his breathing capacity. If he was intubated that could have led to claustrophobia. He seems to panic and resist once he is handcuffed behind the back and put in the car. This may have caused some positional asphyxia, exacerbated by his already compromised breathing. That would definitely lead to panic and resisting the position. Chauvin and Thao, arrived after this so they would not have been aware of his possible COVID related compromised breathing.
      I don’t know if the Fentanyl, the COVID, the positional asphyxia, or a combination of some or all three circumstances could have led to his death. I am curious how fentanyl would interact with COVID complications.
      https://substanceabusepolicy.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13011-020-00333-y

      alaskabob in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 10:43 am

      Breathing issue could be anxiety related or cardiac decomoensation. But in a transition to unconsciousness the fentanyl would seal the deal.

      SpeakUpNow in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 11:45 am

      Thanks for taking the time to explain. Hopefully the trial will be a fair one and facts win out. In the meantime, maybe the govt. can transfer some of the national guard who are wasting time at the Capitol right now to Minneapolis where riots are sure to occur…again.

      rabid wombat in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 1:24 pm

      Hi JustSayN2O

      Thanks! You should comment more often. It is appreciated.

      Please help me understand. From your comments, I am taking that there would be either a chemical, physiological, or mechanical blockage leading to “I can’t breathe”. What from the autopsy documents supports this?

      Doc links:
      https://www.mncourts.gov/mncourtsgov/media/High-Profile-Cases/27-CR-20-12646/ExhibitMtD08282020.pdf
      Scroll in this for the autopsy and toxicology reports:
      https://lawandcrime.com/live-trials/live-trials-current/george-floyd-death/authorities-just-released-george-floyds-complete-autopsy-report-read-it-here/

      From JustSayN20
      “ People who say, “I can’t breathe” are suffering a different problem, and there are many possibilities, but opioid overdose is not one of them. Here are several examples of what may prevent somebody from breathing:

      – obstruction of the airway* (e.g., foreign body within airway, edematous airway due to massive infection or allergic reaction)
      – external compression of the airway (e.g., neck or chest constriction by a very large snake)
      – internal compression of the airway (e.g., tension pneumothorax, tumor)
      – respiratory muscle dysfunction or paralysis (e.g., cervical spinal cord injury, neuro-muscular blocking drug or poison)

      Secondly, opioids such as fentanyl:

      — do not prevent transfer of oxygen from pulmonary alveoli to pulmonary vein,
      — do not prevent uptake of oxygen to circulating hemoglobin, and
      — do not prevent utilization of oxygen by individual cells.”

      Gremlin1974 in reply to JustSayN2O. | March 8, 2021 at 8:07 pm

      Hi Doc,

      I’m a Nurse who has worked in detox and substance abuse treatment and the first thing that I wondered about was the combination of the Fentanyl and the Meth. Couple of questions for you that you didn’t address in your statement.

      I would guess the meth would be absorbed faster through the mucous membranes than the Fentanyl? What is your thought?

      I realize that if you take an upper then an equivalent amount of a downer you aren’t “counteracting” the upper, you are just being damaged by both, but what effect could having such powerful opposing effect drugs do to someone?

      Thank you for your professional input here. I have no experience with opioid abuse, but I did experience a heart attack several years ago, and one thing I kept saying was that I could not breathe.

      Obviously, I could breathe or I couldn’t have said that once much less over and over. In that moment, though, my inability to breathe was the part of my cardiac distress that seemed most pertinent. I couldn’t breathe properly, my chest felt heavy, and I could not draw a even a single breath deep enough to feel life sustaining.

      I think my own experience colors my reaction to the Floyd vid. Whatever the cause, he said he could not breathe. I know what that feels like, how terrifying it is. It seems this should have been addressed somehow. The problem, though, is that he was not complying with lawful police orders and the police responded as trained. In my view, they weren’t wrong. I just wish he had complied. Do you think the opioids in his system prevented a rational response to police orders?

      This is odd. I have had two doctors (both of whom claim to have more than a little experience with overdoses) tell me the symptoms are exactly what they would expect to see if someone had overdosed on something like a speedball. They even said the combativeness and then slow winding down were common.

      I am not doubting your expertise, just its applicability here. I have read where Floyd’s lungs were swollen to the point that they weighed at least twice what they should. If that was the case, how could he not have had trouble breathing? It was also my understanding that this sort of edema is a symptom of that sort of overdose. If not an overdose, then what would cause the lungs to swell like that? His heart problems? Compressive force on some part of his body?

    drednicolson in reply to rabid wombat. | March 7, 2021 at 11:35 pm

    For anyone who doesn’t know, a common use of fentanyl is in animal tranquilizer.

    Floyd popped near enough to put an elephant to sleep, while being only 10% of the weight of an adult elephant.

* * * Andrew – it’s MAY 25, not March.* * *

Watch how the narrative gets setup so the “Not guilty” is used as a trigger for the planned violence and destruction. The plans are ready, the munitions are staged, and the Antifa soldiers have been trained. The governor and AG “ask for calm” or do some other weak symbolic act while their actions will support the violence.

    smalltownoklahoman in reply to TX-rifraph. | March 8, 2021 at 7:07 am

    Honestly if their current governor up there (Tim Walz) is such an idiot that he doesn’t have extra law enforcement & the State’s National Guard on standby ready to deploy in Minneapolis then he will have earned getting dumped next election! Course he is a Dem so he might be counting on the fix being in for him.

    Ben Kent in reply to TX-rifraph. | March 8, 2021 at 9:28 am

    MEDIA MANIPULATION

    The media are not stupid. All major media have lawyers and have covered hundreds of trials. Their biased coverage is CRIMINAL. It is designed to incite people by allowing a false narrative of the case. As a result millions will be SHOCKED by the verdict. They will claim that it’s just another example of institutional racism (which seems to be defined as any outcome with which the woke disagree).

    This country, no society really, can survive when each segment or group in society has a different view of reality (reality defined as commonly “known facts”).

    Media that distort reality truly deserve to be called “enemy of the people.”

      Milhouse in reply to Ben Kent. | March 8, 2021 at 4:05 pm

      I disagree. As Ben Rhodes said, most working journalists were effectively born yesterday, and know very little. They will buy any story that is spun to them, and are neither curious enough nor energetic enough to look any farther than the press release they’re handed to read.

George Floyd for President!

(What? He’s more alive than Biden is.)

Floyd was, reportedly, 6’6″ tall. There could be a reason why police officers had difficulty with restraining him.

Fentanyl is an analgesic or pain medication. Big man, big dose of drug(s), it just took a little time for the compound to take effect.

Such a meaningful contribution to life.

    That is a thread in a lot of these cases – Floyd, Michael Brown in Ferguson, I think the guy in Atlanta. It is difficult for even a muscular LEO in good shape to restrain an uncooperative subject who is the size of an NFL interior lineman.

      Char Char Binks in reply to FOAF. | March 8, 2021 at 11:39 am

      eric garner was 6’3’’, 350 lbs. Daniel Pantaleano, although not nearly that big, was strong enough to take him down, and his chokehold was so powerful that garner’s obese daughter died of a heart attack three years later.

      UserP in reply to FOAF. | March 8, 2021 at 5:34 pm

      Derek Chauvin is 5′ 9″ and weighs 154 lbs.

TheOldZombie | March 7, 2021 at 9:51 pm

The left is already trying to intimidate the jury by holding “pre-trial protests” in the city.

https://twitter.com/disclosetv/status/1368672035983986688?s=20

Question: Did Crump face any disciplinary action for putting an imposter ‘witness’ on the stand in the Treyvon case? i.e. Rachel Jeantel who pretended to be Diamond Eugene (his real girlfriend, who did not want to testify)

    JusticeDelivered in reply to georgfelis. | March 8, 2021 at 10:53 am

    He should have been disbarred and prosecuted.

    Milhouse in reply to georgfelis. | March 8, 2021 at 4:27 pm

    That allegation has yet to be proven. If it ever comes to trial and Zimmerman manages to prove it, then obviously disciplinary action will follow against all the lawyer defendants.

James B. Shearer | March 7, 2021 at 11:47 pm

I don’t think Crump was technically part of the prosecution team lead by Angela Corey and so didn’t put anybody on the stand. If and when it is proven that the prosecution knowingly offered perjured testimony I would expect severe consequences. I believe there was a civil suit about this but I don’t know what the current status of this suit is. Corey did lose her re-election primary in 2016 perhaps in part because of her handling of the Zimmerman case.

    Milhouse in reply to James B. Shearer. | March 8, 2021 at 4:29 pm

    Crump is a defendant in Zimmerman’s suit alleging defamation, but it hasn’t come to trial yet, so it remains just an allegation.

Looking forward to reading the legal analysis. I think COVID may have played a larger role than mentioned. Especially if he was intubated and had lingering Oxygen level and lung capacity issues. As a person who has survived COVID and had O2 level fluctuations and incapacity to fully inhale with my lungs, I am well aware of how hard it can be to breathe even without restraint. I have also been in a situation where positional asphyxia slowly made it harder to breathe, when I accidentally got flipped in an adventure park and couldn’t right myself. Panic can set in.
Let’s go to the Derek Floyd case. He is calm until he is restrained and put in the back of the car with cuffs on. Even that position can cause some positional asphyxia. But for a person who already has compromised breathing much more so. It seems this is when Floyd starts panicking. He mentions that he is suffering from claustrophobia and that he is a COVID survivor. Right there and then, that should have been a signal that he might be compromised. Many intubated survivors have spoken of claustrophobia. And of long term compromised breathing/oxygenation. I know I did. Not being able to breathe can lead to panic and struggling. Chauvin arrived after all this. He would not have been aware that Floyd might be compromised more than the regular suspect, nor that his struggling may have been directly related to his inability to efficiently breathe. All he knew was that he had a struggling suspect that called for the maximum restraint technique. The initial arresting officers never conveyed (and were probably never trained to), that they might have a potentially health compromised suspect. Thus when Chauvin, kneeled on Floyd, using a technique he had used multiple times before, he would have not known that the compression asphyxia, combined with compromised oxygenation and breathing capacity, and possible fentanyl overdose all added up to a man dying of asphyxia. But COVID and miscommunication between initial arrest and support officers arriving after definitely played a big role in his death.

texansamurai | March 8, 2021 at 9:16 am

how many anesthesiologists are out there with a badge arresting combative/resistant criminals?

seems clear that floyd ingested apprx 3X the lethal dose(as confirmed by the blood tests)along with meth, etc. and that he did that to himself

chauvin et al did what they felt necessary to restrain floyd from injuring himself, the officers responding and innocent bystanders

whatever the actions of the police in this case, none of them came close to murder

floyd, whether realizing it or not, had already acted to end his own life

didn’t transcripts show floyd asking to be put on ground and not in car?
he got his wish.
permanently.
good.

    Salsassin in reply to dmacleo. | March 8, 2021 at 11:04 am

    He asked to be put in a better situation for breathing, not worse. Chauvin’s best defense is that he was not aware of Floyd having possible COVID related symptoms, as he came after, and he followed techniques taught by the police.

    Paul In Sweden in reply to dmacleo. | March 8, 2021 at 12:17 pm

    Floyd: I want to lay on the ground. I want to lay on the ground. I want to lay on the ground!

    Lane: You’re getting in the squad [car].

    Floyd: I want to lay on the ground! I’m going down, I’m going down, I’m going down.

    Kueng: Take a squat (sic).

    Floyd: I’m going down.

    Speaker 9: Bro, you about to have a heart attack and shit man, get in the car!

    Floyd: I know I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe. [crosstalk]

    Lane: Get him on the ground.

    Floyd: Let go of me man, I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.

    Lane: Take a seat.

    Floyd: Please man listen to me.

    Officer Chauvin: Is he going to jail?

    Floyd: Please listen to me.

    Kueng: He’s under arrest right now for forgery. [inaudible] what’s going on.

    Floyd: Forgery for what? For what?

    Lane: Let’s take him out [of the squad car] and just MRT [Maximal Restraint Technique by which a suspect’s feet are “hobbled” to his waist].

    Floyd: I can’t fucking breathe man. I can’t fucking breathe.

    Kueng: Here. Come on out [of the squad car]!

    Floyd: [inaudible] Thank you. Thank you.

    Officer Thao: Just lay him on the ground.

    Char Char Binks in reply to dmacleo. | March 9, 2021 at 8:40 am

    Pavement-Temperature Challenge ACCEPTED

Have you seen Andrew McCarthy’s piece on this? He makes two points that I’d like to hear your opinion on:

1. The judge may delay the trial until the state supreme court rules on the third-degree murder issue. The judge thinks the charge is invalid, and McCarthy agrees with him, but until the supreme court says so the law of the state is that it’s valid and he can’t dismiss it, so he may decide to wait for it to be overturned.

2. He thinks that on the evidence currently available the second-degree manslaughter charge is very likely to succeed. Do you agree?

    paralegal in reply to Milhouse. | March 8, 2021 at 11:27 am

    No. 14 medical doctors agree Floyd died of a drug overdose and prexisting cardiac disease. https://www.mncourts.gov/mncourtsgov/media/High-Profile-Cases/27-CR-20-12646/Memorandum203042021.pdf

      mark311 in reply to paralegal. | March 8, 2021 at 3:37 pm

      You keep linking to a document which dismisses the use of a panel of experts. No where in the document does it actually cover the expert witness testimony so it’s not actually clear what the experts are saying. let alone whether it was a drug related death.

        paralegal in reply to mark311. | March 8, 2021 at 3:46 pm

        You keep making the exact same grossly misinformed nonsense claim. The document I linked merely contains the prosecutions written objection. It has not been ruled on and in no way excludes the evidence.

    Joe-dallas in reply to Milhouse. | March 8, 2021 at 12:06 pm

    Milhouse – you and I are going to get a lot of down votes.

    I read Andrew Mccarthy’s article on national review, very insightful article from a former state and federal prosecutor.

    A few points from my perspective
    1) Floyd definitely died due to drug overdose
    2) Chauvin’s actions may have accellerated his death by 10-20 minutes, but floyd was definitely going to die after ingesting the quantity of Fentanyl.
    3) Floyd died at approximately the 7 -7.30 minute mark of the knee on the back.
    4) Chauvin to took steps to accelerate the death which included placing his body in a prone position which makes it more difficult to expand and contract the chest cavity to breathe.
    5) Chauvin should have recognized the symptoms earlier since he would have been previously exposed to drug overdoses (after taking into account the prior encounters with the populace of the area).

    Because of the language in the Minnesota statute, Chauvin guilt or innocence under the MN statute is not clear cut. Under the MN statute, Chauvin could be guilty since he impeded or delayed first aid. Again, let me reiterate that Floyd definitely died of a drug overdose.

      paralegal in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 8, 2021 at 12:15 pm

      Autopsy report places time of death at 9:25 PM which is LONG after the video ended and the knee was removed.

      https://www.hennepin.us/-/media/hennepinus/residents/public-safety/documents/floyd-autopsy-6-3-20.pdf

      Mac45 in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 8, 2021 at 12:33 pm

      Just a couple of thing here, Joe.

      After you state, categorically, that the Fentynal overdose was fatal, in and of itself, you then attempt to make the case that Chauvin’s actions may have induced positional asphyxia and/or a delay in summoning medical assistance was responsible for accelerating Floyd’s demise. However, this is flawed.

      First, if positioning of Floyd’s body was consistent with guidelines established by the department, for drug overdoes cases, then whether it contributed to Floyd’s death is immaterial, unless it can be shown that Chauvin had some specialized knowledge or training which would have allowed him to make a knowledgeable decision which would override the department guidelines.

      Second, the timeline for the incident does not show any delay in the summoning of medial assistance by the police on the scene. Once it became clear that Floyd was possibly suffering some medical emergency, paramedics were immediately summoned to evaluate and treat him.

        Joe-dallas in reply to Mac45. | March 8, 2021 at 1:13 pm

        First – as I previously stated Floyd definitely died of a drug overdose. Nothing chauvin or anyone else did could have saved his life.

        See andrew mccarthy’s article at national review.

        The problem for Chauvin is he took actions that could be argued impeded the administration of first aid and put floyd into a prone position which made breathing more difficult. Those actions could also be argued that they accelerated his death (possibly by 15 or so minutes).

        Under the MN statutes, those actions could be construed to have contributed to floyd’s death. In the worst case, chauvin’s actions only accelerated his death by 15 or so minutes. But that is enough to reach the second degree murder charge.

        lastly let me reiterate that Floyd died of a drug overdose.

          Mac45 in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 8, 2021 at 4:13 pm

          What McCarthy was trying to illustrate is the only true course open to prosecutors. That is to argue that, even though Floyd was essentially poisoned, by his on hand, and would very likely not have survived the ingestion of a fatal cocktail of illicit drugs, Chauvin’s actions and inaction, not proven or specified evidence, somehow caused him to die sooner, thereby making Chauvin responsible for his death. This position, besides being incredibly weak, legally, is essentially insane.

          1) The prosecution would have to acknowledge that the autopsy essentially establishes the cause of death as being a drug overdose, compounded by preexisting medical conditions. This is a tremendous hurdle to overcome to achieve a conviction for homicide, unless the defendant supplied or administered the drugs involved.

          2) The prosecution then has to successfully prove that the actions or inaction of Chauvin actually directly caused him to die, prematurely. Reasonable doubt, you know.

          3) The prosecution then has to prove that the actions or inaction, taken by Chauvin, were so egregious that he knew or should have known that they would likely result in Floyd’s death. And, unless the prosecution has some kind of smoking gun, unknown to the rest of the world, that is going to be nearly impossible.

          All the prosecution really has is the video, which might generate sufficient emotion, in a jury, to secure a conviction. Otherwise, this case, though not a self defense case like Zimmerman, is significantly weaker. It is more akin to the Grey case, in Baltimore.

      mark311 in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 8, 2021 at 3:44 pm

      I tried looking up the article you reference and couldn’t find one relating to what you said instead I found this one by the same author.

      I quote “There is significant evidence that Chauvin’s use of force was excessive. Chauvin was a 19-year veteran who’d received extensive training. Minneapolis police are instructed not to use neck restraints, which can obviously make breathing difficult, on suspects who are only passively resisting. How passively Floyd was resisting is sure to be a hotly disputed issue at the trial; though he was not physically aggressive toward the police, he ended up lying on the ground because he physically resisted their vigorous efforts to place him in the squad car. That said, Chauvin maintained the neck restraint on Floyd, pressing his face into the hard street, for over nine minutes, despite Floyd’s pleas that he was having trouble breathing.

      Through more than the last four of those minutes, while Chauvin continued to apply this pressure, Floyd clearly was offering no resistance; Chauvin rebuffed a fellow officer’s suggestion that they roll Floyd onto his side (which, police are trained, facilitates breathing); concerned civilians beseeched Chauvin to relent; Floyd stopped speaking and appeared to stop breathing; the detaining officers could not detect a pulse; and an off-duty fire-department medic was denied the opportunity to provide CPR or other emergency assistance. Such was Chauvin’s persistence that he even maintained the pressure on Floyd’s neck for a full minute after the ambulance arrived on the scene. Less than an hour later, Floyd was pronounced dead at the hospital. The evidence is sufficiently horrifying and out of the mainstream to outweigh legitimate concerns that police will shy away from making arrests for fear of being charged with criminal assault.”

      https://www.nationalreview.com/2021/03/the-george-floyd-murder-trial-a-charging-nightmare/

      Some interesting points contained within it

This is going to be a medical evidence and opinion trial. The only points at issue are 1) did Chauvin’s actions or inaction cause Floyd’s death and, if so, were those actions justified.

So, first, the prosecution has to establish, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Chauvin actual caused Floyd’s death. While the video may suggest that Chauvin’s actions did cause Floyd’s death, the forensic evidence does not support this conclusion. What we have here is the equivalent of a video showing a one man fire a pistol at another, who then stumble away and collapses and dies. The man with the pistol is then arrested, based upon the video evidence. However, when the autopsy is done, there is no sign of a gunshot wound. In addition, the victim is found to have a fatal dose of drugs in his system as well as cardiac and other conditions. So, the prosecution will have to prove that the action of shooting the gun somehow triggered a heart attack or other medical condition through induced fear.

If you enjoy medical testimony and the myriad motions to allow or bar such testimony, you are in for a treat here.

    paralegal in reply to Mac45. | March 8, 2021 at 12:49 pm

    My concern is the technical nature and sheer volume of the medical opinion testimony may overwhelm the jury.

Hmmmmm… I see a lot of comments that are stating that Floyd died from a drug overdose. This has not been proven. That he had a level of drugs high enough to kill him is not in dispute. But even if a person has a terminal condition, an intervening cause of death can still be held. Just because someone is about to die of cancer to the heart doesn’t mean someone can’t kill him by shooting him in the heart. The key point is that it is going to be very hard to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the positional asphyxia was the intervening cause of death before the fatal level of fentanyl eventually killed him anyway.

Gremlin1974 | March 8, 2021 at 8:21 pm

Great to see you here again, Andrew and can’t wait to read your analysis.

My shameless plug for Andrew, buy his book and take his class, you will not regret it.

Font Resize
Contrast Mode
Send this to a friend