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Chauvin Trial Day 14 Wrap-Up: Mistrial Narrowly Avoided, Closing Arguments Monday

Chauvin Trial Day 14 Wrap-Up: Mistrial Narrowly Avoided, Closing Arguments Monday

Defense offered no practicable opportunity to contest Dr. Tobin’s rebuttal testimony

Welcome to our ongoing coverage of the Minnesota murder trial of Derek Chauvin, over the in-custody death of George Floyd.  I am Attorney Andrew Branca for Law of Self Defense.

Today was mercifully brief in duration, but packed full of action—at least, for certain lawyer values of “action,” so let’s dive right in.

Two notable events I’ve already discussed in a breaking news post was the decision of the defense to call no further witnesses—and this included waiving the prospect of having Chauvin appear as a witness to testify on his own behalf.

Chauvin elected to assert his 5A right to not testify, and when offered to have the jury instructed that guilt could not be inferred from his not testifying, he affirmed he wanted that instruction given.  You can see my previous write-up of those events, including court room video of that discussion and exchange, here:

BREAKING: Derek Chauvin Will Not Testify, Asserts 5A Privilege

The big surprise of the day, however, was the state’s sudden claim that they had discovered “new evidence” that justified re-calling state expert witness Dr. Martin Tobin, pulmonologist, to the witness stand to rebut some of yesterday’s testimony by defense expert Dr. David Fowler, a forensic pathologist.

The “new evidence” was purportedly just-discovered data on Floyd’s blood oxygen levels when at the Hennepin County Medical Center.

The state wished to have Dr. Tobin testify about that data to rebut suggestions by Dr. Fowler that given the proximity of Floyd’s face to the exhaust of squad car 320, it was possible that Floyd’s carbon monoxide blood concentration could have been as high as 18%–a level Fowler testified was sufficient to be dangerous to Floyd, and a contributing cause to Floyd’s death, given Floyd’s fragile physiology.

As these things tend to go in court, the argument over whether to allow Tobin to be re-called as a witness for this rebuttal purpose took about twice as long as did his actual testimony—but for good reason.

Obviously, this demand for rebuttal by the state, particular on this blood data “discovered” just after Fowler’s testimony ended yesterday afternoon, and with notice provided to the defense only about 5 o’clock in the evening, was about as late in the course of the trial as could be imagined.

Further, the defense expert witness on this subject matter, Dr. Fowler, was presently on a plane flying home while the state was arguing in court for their own expert, Dr. Tobin, to be recalled.

During the discussion about whether Tobin should be permitted to provide additional testimony, the state set out four areas that they wished Tobin to testify about.

First, the state claimed that the Hennepin County Medical Examiner, Dr. Thomas Baker, after hearing Fowler’s testimony yesterday on the carbon dioxide issue, had somehow dug into the hospital’s records and found that Floyd’s blood concentration of CO had, in fact, been measured at the time—but had never been previously produced when the parties had subpoenaed Floyd’s medical records.

The state now wanted these data to be shared with the jury and explained by Dr. Tobin, to rebut Fowler’s claim that Floyd’s CO concentration could have been as high as 18%.

Normally, of course, the state would have been expected to make such arguments in Dr. Tobin’s original testimony, and their failure to do so would not be a good reason to suddenly allow Tobin to re-testify now.

An exception to that normal prohibition on re-testimony, however, can be made if the defense itself had “ambushed” the prosecution with scientific arguments for which they had not provided the state with notice.

Prosecutor Blackwell argued that Fowler’s reference to CO concentrations as high as 18% had never previously been disclosed to the state, and so qualified as just such an “ambush” that justified Tobin’s re-call to the witness stand.

The defense countered that Fowler had explicitly referenced CO as a possible contributor to Floyd’s death in his expert report shared with the state weeks before trial began and had even recommend that the state test the blood for CO concentration.

It was only the state, not the defense, that had possession of the blood.  As a result, the state was on notice with respect to the CO issue, and if they failed to address that issue in a timely manner, that was on them.

Judge Cahill agreed with the defense with respect to this “newly discovered” blood gas level data, and informed the state that if Tobin so much as hinted at this new data, the Judge would order a mistrial had occurred.

That said, Cahill said he would allow Tobin to speak to the CO concentration issue if he only referenced data that had long been available to both parties.  That opened the door to the prosecution having Tobin reference Floyd’s oxygen (rather than carbon monoxide) levels, and use the O level to infer possible CO level.

This is possible because O and CO both compete for the same binding location on hemoglobin, and only one of them can bind any particular hemoglobin protein.  So, a protein bound by O cannot also be available to be bound by CO, and the reverse.

Because the parties were aware that blood gas measurements had indicated that Floyd’s blood had O levels of 98%, it could be inferred that his CO levels could be no greater than the remaining 2%, which was well within normal.

There was also another entirely separate issue that the state also wanted Tobin to provide rebuttal testimony on, and this involved Fowler’s claim yesterday that he had been unable to find any scientific studies supporting Tobin’s earlier claim that the hypopharynx could be narrowed by pressure placed on a person’s back.  Fowler said he had searched the major scientific publication database, known as PubMed, and come up with no results.

The state claimed that Fowler’s reference to this PubMed search was “new evidence” not previously shared with them, again qualifying as “ambush” testimony, and again providing the exception necessary for them to have Dr. Tobin testify on this issue on rebuttal.  The state indicated that Tobin would testify that there were, in fact, a number of scientific papers and studies that supported his claim.

Naturally the defense objected, saying that they would not have any opportunity to research Tobin’s claim of such papers and studies existing, much less of actually reading these materials in order to understand if they supported Tobin’s claim or were subject to effective impeachment.  Further, again, the defense expert witness Fowler was on a plane and not available to the court.

Judge Cahill ruled that Tobin would be permitted to testify as to the existence of such papers on rebuttal, in a summary fashion.

The state also wanted to be permitted to have Dr. Tobin testify again on his earlier claim that the cause of Floyd’s death was hypoxia, or low oxygen, claiming that Dr. Fowler had contested that claim in yesterday’s testimony.

Fowler had claimed that it wasn’t low oxygen induced by positional asphyxia that caused Floyd’s heart to fail, as Tobin had argued, but rather that it was Floyd’s heart failing that had resulted in a low oxygen state.

This was the weakest argument for rebuttal testimony offered by the state.  Really, both Tobin and Fowler agreed that Floyd had evidenced a low oxygen state by various symptoms, such as a particular convulsive leg kick.

Their only disagreement was the precise mechanism that had led to that low oxygen state—Tobin claimed positional asphyxia as the cause, and Fowler claimed cardiac arrest as the cause.

Cahill ruled that Tobin would not be permitted to testify as to this issue on rebuttal.

So, in the end, Tobin was permitted to speak to the issue of inferring a maximum CO concentration in Floyd’s blood of no more than 2% based on the measured O level of 98%, and to inform the jury that he was aware of some 12 to 20 scientific papers that supported the notion that smaller lung volume resulted in a narrowing of the hypopharynx.

Here is that discussion among the parties and Judge Cahill:

State Direct Questioning of Tobin Rebuttal

That direct questioning on rebuttal was conducted by Prosecutor Blackwell and took only about 8 minutes.  Excitement, of the legal type, occurred about four minutes into direct when Tobin appeared to reference the blood gas data that Cahill had cautioned would result in a mistrial.

Nelson immediately objected, and the court went into a couple of minutes of sidebar, during which I’m sure the defense was asking for a mistrial.

Frankly, in my professional opinion, a mistrial in this case would be entirely warranted, if not from this particular incident in isolation, then from the accumulated harms done to the defense by the state’s untimely dropping of thousands of exhibits on the defense even as the trial proper was taking place, averaging nearly 500 new exhibits each day of the trial.

At the end of that sidebar, however, Blackwell returned to continue his direct of Tobin, so no mistrial, and presumably he was cautioned to avoid mention of the prohibited blood gas data.

Defense Cross-Examination of Tobin Rebuttal

After Tobin’s rebuttal testimony on direct, there was another lengthy pause in the proceedings, conducted off microphone (and perhaps even in the judge’s chambers rather than in the court room), during which I’m confident that Nelson was once again arguing for a mistrial.

Apparently that argument was to no avail, however, because Nelson did return and conduct cross-examination of Tobin.

Without any real way to prepare for this unexpected testimony, there really wasn’t much he could accomplish.  As a natural consequence of this constraint, his cross took only about two minutes, and you can view that here:

That ended Tobin’s rebuttal testimony.

Judge Advises Jury to Expect Closing & Deliberations Monday

At this point the state and defense both made the final announcement that they were resting their case in chief, and Judge Cahill turned his attention to the jury.

They would be dismissed for the day, and until Monday at 9:00am CT, at which time they would return to court to hear the closing arguments of the state and the defense, receive their jury instructions, and begin their deliberations.  They were reminded that they were to be sequestered during deliberations, and so were cautioned to “pack a bag.”

On the topic of how much to pack, Cahill suggested that they plan for a long sequestration, and hope it turns out to be a short one, but that ultimately only the jury could decide how long deliberations would take.

The jury was then dismissed.

Discussion re: Charging Conference (Jury Instructions)

After the jury had left, there was a brief discussion about the charge conference for this trial.  The charge conference is where the parties meet with the judge to iron out the precise jury instructions to be given to the jury to guide them in their deliberations.

Obviously, because those instructions guide the jury to either a guilty or not guilty verdict, each party has an interest in trying to bias those instructions in their own favor, both by ensuring that particular desirable instructions are included among those given to the jury, as well as that any customization of the instructions be favorable to their own interests.

Minnesota, like most states, has standardized jury instructions for criminal trials, but standardized instructions are always subject to some customization by a trial judge to best fit the particular facts and legal arguments in a given trial.

I’ve covered the relevant standardized jury instructions likely in this case in a blog post early this week, here:

LIVE: Chauvin Trial Day 12 – Meet the Jury Instructions, Bring On The Defense Case

The selection of the specific instructions to be given to the jury, and discussion of any possible customization of those instructions, are what is hashed out during the charge conference.

Unfortunately for us, Cahill announced that the charge conference in this case will take place in chambers, so will not be subject to observation.  I do expect we will be able to observe the actual reading of the instructions to the jury in court on Monday, however, and if I obtain physical copies of those final jury instructions, I’ll share them, as well.

UPDATE: State & Defense Discussion of Jury Instructions with Judge Cahill [AFB]

Hey, folks.  Apparently the parties spent a couple of hours with Judge Cahill in chambers discussing the jury instructions, outside of the view of cameras, and then came back into the courtroom to establish a 30-minute summary of key points for the court record.–and that 30-minute in-court discussion was made publicly available.

Accordingly, here’s the video of that in-court discussion:

And that wraps up our coverage of the Chauvin trial for today, folks. Expect to see us back with live coverage of the court’s proceedings on Monday morning, and perhaps a post to carry us over the weekend if some interesting topic strikes my fancy in the interim.

Course Special: Lawful Defense Against Rioters, Looters, and Arsonists

Before I go, in view of the ongoing riots raging presently in Minneapolis, and likely to explode across the nation when this case arrives at a verdict (or mistrial), I’ve also taken the liberty of putting together a special opportunity to access our best-selling course, “Lawful Defense Against Rioters, Looters, and Arsonists,” available in both online streamed and DVD formats.  You can learn more about that course, by clicking here.

And thanks, as always, to both Legal Insurrection and CCW Safe for the support that makes my coverage of this case possible.

–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. He wrote the first edition of the “Law of Self Defense” in 1997, which you can now order in its current edition for just the price of shipping and handling by clicking here.  To know YOUR state’s use-of-force laws in an actionable way that will keep you safer physically and legally, take our state-specific advanced use of force class either streamed online or via a shipped DVD with a 100% no-question- asked money-back guarantee, here:  Law of Self Defense State Specific Use-Of-Force Class.

[Featured image is a screen capture from video of today’s court proceedings in MN v. Chauvin.]

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Comments

Mr. Branca, once again, thank you. Do you offer your “lawful defense” teaching in book form?

Unfortunately Nelson and Cahill both dropped the ball during the discussion of what to allow in rebuttal re carbon monoxide.

Initially, Cahill stated that Tobin could only testify regarding environment’s (i.e. exhaust) likelihood to cause elevated CO. Then Blackwell came back and asked can we mention the O2 reading which is already in evidence (because 100-O2 ~= CO). Cahill and Nelson both thought Blackwell was referring to pulseox (optical finger reading) which Fowler testified could not differentiate between O2 and CO. So Cahill just said Nelson could respond to that on cross.

Then Tobin testified on the O2 found in Floyd’s blood at the hospital, evidence which I assume had already been submitted.

IMHO it was unfair for Nelson and Cahill to have to deal with these technical medical questions at the last second, for which they were clearly out of their depth, but I don’t think Tobin/Blackwell disobeyed Cahill’s (somewhat vague) orders regarding what they could talk about.

    Pat Lee in reply to hope1234. | April 15, 2021 at 9:22 pm

    You’re overthinking this. I’m not in the medical field or a lawyer. To me, the exhaust fumes were so trivial. I wasn’t even sure why Fowler mentioned them. If anything it looked damaging to the police for placing Floyd there. Obviously, the defense took that risk for a reason. Why? Then Nelson agreed fairly easily that Tobin could rebut that “bit”. Why? There are so many other contributing factors to Floyd’s death. Fowler was rock solid credible. It would be tough to impeach him over fumes! Surely the prosecution isn’t that dumb. So what am I missing?

      lhw in reply to Pat Lee. | April 16, 2021 at 8:48 am

      When somebody has an oxygen saturation of 98%, they are not dying of hypoxia. That is a “good to excellent normal”. The closing should include the statement that either 1) There was significant CO contaminating the saturation measurement or 2) Mr. Floyd had lots of oxygen in his body as a whole. I have diastolic heart failure. My saturation is 92/3 as I write this. I assure you that I am most certainly not dead.

      I may be wrong, but I think Mr. Blackwell just blew up his case.

        Edward in reply to lhw. | April 16, 2021 at 11:39 am

        That was my immediate thought. If Floyd had a Blood O2 concentration of 98% he sure wasn’t short of O2 in his blood, which this non-medical person would think meant he wasn’t “choking” in the layman’s idea of the term.

        Basing the following on my family medical history, at some point before death his lungs were transferring sufficient O2 to sustain life to his blood. Whether that O2 was getting to his heart muscle is an entirely different issue given what appears to have been his significant to severe coronary atherosclerosis combined with his enlarged heart.

          DaveGinOly in reply to Edward. | April 16, 2021 at 12:53 pm

          “… at some point before death his lungs were transferring sufficient O2 to sustain life to his blood. Whether that O2 was getting to his heart muscle is an entirely different issue…”

          This is an excellent point. If GF’s blood O concentration was 98%, that’s inconsistent with asphyxiation. But it is not inconsistent with cardiac arrest caused by O starvation of the heart.

          malclave in reply to Edward. | April 17, 2021 at 7:59 pm

          My immediate thought was “how long had he been on 100% O2 before the 98% O2Sat was measured?”.

          lhw in reply to Edward. | April 18, 2021 at 11:23 am

          The results of the autopsy were that his lungs weight over 2x normal due to fluid. That is pulmonary edema and happens when folks od with opiods. I am not sure that squares with the claims of 98% saturation, but I think that the defense should have raised the point. The foaming at the mouth is a result of that sort of edema.

          In a case like Mr. Floyd, what matters is the amount of oxygen getting to the ventricles of the heart. The heart is an amazing failsafe organ. The sinus node runs on sodium. Normally that controls the heart rate. The signal to beat travels from the sinus node to the AV node. The sinus node pacemaker has also just triggered the atria to beat. Once the signal hits the AV node, the node introduces a delay before it passes the signal on to the bundle of His and the ventricles. The AV node runs on calcium. If it has not had a signal to beat lately, it will send one on to the ventricles by itself. Classically, the period is about 1 second, but that is not etched in stone. The reason for the introduced delay is to allow the atria to dump their blood into the ventricles prior to the ventricles contracting. The ventricles run on potassium. Like I said fail safe, three different elements in the system. You can be low on one or two of them, but the third one keeps things going. In the absence of a nerve impulse to the ventricles in something over 1.5 seconds, the oxygen in the ventricular tissue becomes low. When this happens, the ventricles attempt to pace. Sometimes that is just a couple of beats paced by the ventricles, but it can be something else. A ventricular tachycardia is most survivable for a period of time. In Mr. Floyd’s case, I suspect that the lack of oxygen to the heart tissue due to the advanced atherosclerosis of the cardiac arteries triggered a massive, chaotic pacing of the ventricles, basically ventricular fib. If somebody had put him on oxygen and paddled him, I think he might have survived if they had given his some narcan on top of all of that. The oxygen would have helped him get as much o2 to his heart tissue as possible. paddling him would have perhaps restored his usual pacing, and the narcan would have reduced the chances of further problems.

          If Mr. Floyd had behaved himself, the would have had medical attention earlier. He didn’t and it proved fatal to him.

          I am not a medical doctor. The PhD is in engineering.

We could see use of force protests erupt again in greater Minneapolis this weekend as well as in Chicago because of a video from an earlier incident that is due to be released today. So, the jurors can get a good dose of what they can expect to happen to their city (again) and potentially their own homes should they find Mr. Chauvin not-guilty…

…exactly like the state and its client propaganda arm, the US media, would like it.

    lurker9876 in reply to TargaGTS. | April 15, 2021 at 3:17 pm

    Which implies that any outcome from the DC case matters not one whit….the use of force protests will occur. Hoping these jurors will understand that no matter what their decision is, the riots will happen.

    But they won’t.

      Christopher B in reply to lurker9876. | April 15, 2021 at 3:39 pm

      I was thinking along similar lines earlier today about the riots following the death of Duante Wright. I can see how some jurors might look at the protests and want to convict Officer Chaupin on at least one of the charges to avoid protesting. I can also see jurors watching those riots and thinking that tragic mistakes will keep occurring as long as we have cops, and convicting any one cop unfairly is not going to stop them.

        lurker9876 in reply to Christopher B. | April 15, 2021 at 4:45 pm

        Problem is that people are not taught how to behave when confronted by the police. No matter what MPD does, it will not get any better until these blacks learn to behave and show up before a judge on time.

          DaveGinOly in reply to lurker9876. | April 16, 2021 at 12:55 pm

          Why should people be trained “how to behave when confronted by the police”? Police are already trained in “how to behave” when dealing with citizens, and citizens only need follow directions from the police when such dealings occur.

      Dear lurker9876, my sense is that cahill may want two things: First, a guilty verdict in order to assuage the terrorist mob, and second, to get this out of his court and county. I believe, subject to correction from those far more knowledgeable than I, that cahill has provided the defense with a number of points upon which to justify an appeal. By doing this, he is attempting to slow down or chill out the terrorist mob. The next excuse for the terorist mob will be the sentencing, if any. I agree with you that the riots will never stop.

      JohnC in reply to lurker9876. | April 15, 2021 at 6:49 pm

      If Chauvin is acquitted BLM will riot in protest. If Chauvin is convicted BLM will riot in celebration. No matter what happens BLM will riot. Because rioting is the point and the trial is simply beside it.

    kak185ttx in reply to TargaGTS. | April 15, 2021 at 5:52 pm

    Needed to know what the relative amount of CO vs CO2 in his blood

    aerily in reply to TargaGTS. | April 15, 2021 at 7:04 pm

    Not likely IMO. Kid appears hispanic not black.

      artichoke in reply to aerily. | April 16, 2021 at 2:27 pm

      There was a demonstration in Phoenix last night, probably a large hispanic turnout. So that community will also march when aggrieved.

    JLT in reply to TargaGTS. | April 15, 2021 at 8:27 pm

    How does the Sam Sheppard case apply here? In that case, the Supreme Court overturned his conviction on the basis that media coverage created a “carnival atmosphere”. Here we have a clear threat of violence by the mob if they disagree with the verdict.

Talcum X must have been watching a different trial.

https://twitter.com/shaunking/status/1382725708972228617

The liberals in the whole country is trying to get rid of due process. Remember the Kavanaugh hearings?

    JHogan in reply to lurker9876. | April 15, 2021 at 4:52 pm

    They’re not ‘liberals’. They’re Marxist fascists.

      TargaGTS in reply to JHogan. | April 15, 2021 at 6:23 pm

      Classical liberalism on the left has been almost extinct for some time now. It wasn’t that long ago that the fiercest protectors of free speech were leftist college professors who instinctively recoiled at the ability of corporate America to manipulate public dialogue.

      Today, that same demographic are exactly as you describe: Marxist fascists and the not only celebrate when corporate America enforces their orthodoxy, but they demand it. Weird times.

        BigFrank1979 in reply to TargaGTS. | April 15, 2021 at 10:21 pm

        The prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that chauvin killed floyd. And in my opinion they haven’t even come close. Between floyd’s drug use and poor health and him overdosing on heroin two months before, there’s plenty of reasonable doubt from the defense.

Minor quibble – Fowler’s testimony re: carboxyhemoglobin was that GF’s could have been *raised* by 10-18% (normal is <3% in non-smokers) – so that would be 3.3-3.6%. Prosecutors claimed that Fowler said the level was 10-18% (strawman). Math is hard… Best part of the day was when state's star witness testified that GF's O2 sat was 98% – directly impeaching his previous hypoxia testimony. Could be lots of reasons O2 sats went up, but the jury didn't hear any content for the number – just that it was normal.

    buck61 in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 3:33 pm

    maybe that is why Baker left it out of the autopsy report, bury the data

    jbrecon2 in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 3:36 pm

    Ok…..couple huge things here. He testified that his Oxygen Saturation was 98% on the Blood gas and that is his indication that it couldn’t be Carbon monoxide poisoning. This is patently false, Dr Tobin knows it, and he intentionally misled the jury. Of course his O2 saturation was 98% in the hospital, he had already been intubated and was receiving 100% oxygen thru an end otra heal tube. Obviously his 02 Saturation was not 98% on the ground. Nelson could have easily discredited this witness today.

      wrpeterson in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 3:54 pm

      But Nelson didn’t have to – Tobin said GF’s O2 sat was normal, but never testified as to why (intubation, O2 therapy, CPR, etc.). All the jury heard was that it was normal, no hypoxia. Defense never claimed CO poisoning, just an increase (from 3.0% to 3.3-3.6%) – obv. the increase in CO (if there was any) would also have gone down due to medical intervention.

      carolinaandbaby in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 6:17 pm

      Cooorreeecttt!!! This whole discussion centers around the O2 sat at the hospital but not sure is that is a blood gas or pulse ox. And that is so stupid to even claim that the O2 sat was 98% and that means only 2% to carboxyhemoglobin….who are the quacks who testify??? I think that the state is so confused themselves what is the cause of death. Was GF still alive at the hospital? It looked to me on Lane’s body cam that he was DOA in the ambulance when they did CPR and put him on the thumper after a failed intubation (or really oral airway). Dumbest medical experts ever…

        TargaGTS in reply to carolinaandbaby. | April 15, 2021 at 7:58 pm

        FWIW, the wife’s an ER doc. I’m told that (before Naloxone was as ubiquitous as it is now), ODs would get wheeled into her ER and look as dead as doornails as they’re being bagged. The trauma nurse shoots up the patient with Narcane and just like magic, life is self-evident. This is because the patients are essentially comatose, completely unresponsive before the antagonist is administered. Now, that doesn’t mean everything is roses. Many have suffered brain damage or stroke in the intervening time and are never the same again. But, they’re ‘alive.’ Yay science.

      Astrov in reply to jbrecon2. | April 16, 2021 at 8:30 am

      Nelson and Cahill were definitely refering to pulse ox. A Zoll machine was referenced by a paramedic on Day 4 that had pulse ox. I am not up on MN evidence law but from watching the ER doc I don’t think he referenced the Arterial Blood Gas tests. So were these results already admitted?

    jbrecon2 in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 3:41 pm

    Yeah of course his O2 Sat went up. How do we lessen Carbon Monoxide? With oxygen! By the time that arterial blood gas was drawn George Floyd was into baited and receiving 100% oxygen through bag valve mask ventilations. Clearly is O2 saturation was not 98% when he was on the ground. Dr. Tobin knows this and completely missed lead the jury. I can’t believe Nelson didn’t catch it on cross examination.

      wrpeterson in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 4:05 pm

      Kinda moot – Tobin testified that GF O2 sats were normal and no other testimony explains why (intubation, O2 therapy in the rig, CPR). Tobin got cute and destroyed the State’s case…

        I agree that this is a topic for closing argument. The state is alleging death by asphyxia but the O2 was normal sat.

        Rocinante123 in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 6:07 pm

        Everybody acknowledges George Floyd ended up suffering from hypoxia, the difference is an issue of how. Was it because he was asphyxiated? Or was it because his heart gave out and was unable to sufficiently pump blood and he ended up with hypoxia that way?

        I was thinking the same thing.

          Astrov in reply to JLT. | April 16, 2021 at 8:33 am

          Well if his blood was full of oxygen his lungs were working. If his brain was deprived of oxygen it was because the pump gave out.

      MajorWood in reply to jbrecon2. | April 16, 2021 at 1:32 am

      The binding coefficient of CO to hemoglobin is essentially irreversible. You basically reverse it only with new hemoglobin, as in, a blood transfusion.

Arterial blood gas is usually normal for pO2 in CO poisoning… the oxygen amount in plasma doesn’t significantly change. What changes is that the red blood cell can’t give up oxygen. That whole 98% and 2% bit is completely wrong and Dr. Tobin should know better.

    lurker9876 in reply to aerily. | April 15, 2021 at 3:33 pm

    Nelson asked about the blood color, which Cahill said he can raise during cross. Blood color was not raised by Blackwell nor Nelson. Guess the state did not go far with its rebut? But are the jurors smart?

    Dathurtz in reply to aerily. | April 15, 2021 at 3:39 pm

    That is what spawned my question on a previous post. There seem to be some technicalities here than need to be resolved to make functional use of the testimony.

    carolinaandbaby in reply to aerily. | April 15, 2021 at 6:19 pm

    dumbest medical experts ever…mistrial!!

    aerily in reply to aerily. | April 15, 2021 at 7:41 pm

    To clarify O2 binds to heme in hemoglobin. So does CO. Only CO binds a hell of a lot stronger. So strong that the acidic environment at the capilary won’t allow the red blood cell to give up the CO. CO2 in contrast, binds to the polypeptide part of hemoglobin. CO replaces oxygen and doesn’t get counted as CO2. That’s why the blood gasses in CO poisoning are usually pretty normal and why pulse oxymetery gives a misleading reading. That 98% thus 2% is horribly wrong.
    This is really basic stuff for Tobin. Like stuff you learn in organic chemistry basic. He knows this.

Andrew, Can we get your thoughts on what it does to the prosecutions case that they just argued that Floyd’s O2 levels were normal? Does that not go counter to the claim that the positional asphyxia limited the ability for Floyd to oxygenate his blood? Moreover, given that the blood choke theory is out, does that not mean that Floyd’s brain was receiving fully oxygenated blood?

Inversely, if the argument is that his O2 levels were indeed low, but resuscitative efforts brought O2 to normal after the fact, does that not also infer that the CO levels would have also been brought to normal at the same time?

It feels like the Prosecution pretty much tanked their whole case here.

    buck61 in reply to EddieRo. | April 15, 2021 at 3:58 pm

    maybe that was a trap laid out by Fowler and Nelson to discredit the state’s case, if it was it would be brilliant or they just lucked into a way to completely blow up part of the state’s case

    wrpeterson in reply to EddieRo. | April 15, 2021 at 5:13 pm

    I don’t think there was any testimony re: increasing O2 sat because of medical intervention – remember that this was a last-minute rebuttal from the State. Jury never heard why O2 sat was 98%, just that it was… Even the nurse on the jury can’t provide expert testimony during deliberations, only the evidence presented in court…

Albert Schwartz | April 15, 2021 at 3:28 pm

It seems like the prosecution has made a huge blunder. Their own expert testified that Floyd’s blood was almost fully oxygenated at the time he died.

All the stuff about the officer’s knee or Floyd’s positioning restricting his breathing goes out the window. If he was starved of oxygen for any reason his blood oxygen saturation would drop. In trying to discredit the carbon monoxide theory they may have destroyed their whole case.

I think Nelson should hammer that point in his closing. There are no more witnesses. The prosecution only has their own closing to rebut the fact put out by their own expert’s testimony.

Wish I could get this comment to Nelson.

    wrpeterson in reply to Albert Schwartz. | April 15, 2021 at 3:57 pm

    Agreed. Star witness impeached his own testimony. Prosecution can’t introduce any new evidence during closing argument, so they’re stuck with 98% – no way to provide context as it would be new testimony.

    Again, I’m just a layperson here. But, the exhaust fumes were the least important factor contributing to Floyd’s death-at least for me. I thought it was odd when Fowler even mentioned the fumes. Why would the prosecution even open up that up for discussion? It seems like such a trivial point. Also, Fowler was clear that it was just another contributing factor to consider. I get that the prosecution was trying to impeach Fowler. However, Fowler was rock solid and Nelson was agreeable to letting the prosecution call Tobin back on that point. What am I missing? I don’t get the medical implications or the legal ramifications.

      buck61 in reply to Pat Lee. | April 15, 2021 at 9:16 pm

      you don’t spring the trap too soon, the state when into full blown panic over a factor that may or may not have contributed. what it did was expose the state’s witholding information requested by fowler to consider in february and state produced it on the last day of the regular phase of the trial. the state was so bent on leaning on an oxygen deficit yet tobin goes before the jury and announces his oxygen levels were normal. it was the last thing the jury heard befor being dismissed until monday
      the question becomes, can at least one jury member connect the dots on their own, how will nelson address it in closing and how will the state try and rebutt this big hole in their case based on their own experts testimony.

        Smooth23 in reply to buck61. | April 15, 2021 at 11:22 pm

        Id say the evidence and testimony is the dots. Nelson needs to connect the dots during closing for the jury. Its not like they aren’t at home googling and watching the news anyhow.

          lurker9876 in reply to Smooth23. | April 16, 2021 at 9:10 am

          I wonder if the document search was also a trap. I would like to know exactly what Fowler and his panel were looking for. Versus what Tobin was looking for.

          Someone here did a query based on Fowler’s comments and yielded same results – ZERO! But Tobin said he found 12 to 20 articles.

          Implication of different topics and issues that they were looking for.

          Does Fowler’s panel include a pulmonologist?

        Pat Lee in reply to buck61. | April 16, 2021 at 6:41 pm

        Yes. That’s what I thought! But, didn’t know if anyone saw it differently!

How many of the state’s attorneys will be allowed in the conference with Cahill and Nelson. is it just one per side or can the state send as many as they want to that conference?

Yeah, I’m gonna say the state’s been using a loaded deck, and Judge Cahill, acolyte of Amy Klobuchar, has let them, although he has sometimes appeared to be fair. The facts in the case still favor Chauvin somewhat, but no way in this life does he get an acquittal. Too much time between now and Monday, a long enough gap for protests to occur and buildings to be burned and destroyed and businesses to be keelhauled. Members of the jury will vote for the least amount of chaos.

Now, if, somehow, Chauvin gets a hung jury, will the state pursue? Will there be a federal case? Can a civil case be brought against him by the $27 million-enriched beneficiaries of the George Floyd estate?

    REDACTED in reply to DeepRunner. | April 15, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    Yeah, I’m gonna say the state’s been using a loaded deck, and Judge Cahill, acolyte of Amy Klobuchar, has let them,

    careful, the LI Pearl Clutchers are watching, they will down vote you

      anglophones in reply to REDACTED. | April 16, 2021 at 12:19 am

      All week I’ve been watching people get downvoted for any suggestion that Cahill has been anything less than neutral. It feels like people here have some strange fundamental need to believe in the neutrality and continuing functionality of judges and the legal administration, in spite of all the evidence around us that the entire system is broken (and I’m not just talking about the legal system.there)..

      I’ve only known about this site since some time after this particular trial started so I wouldn’t presume to psychoanalyse its userbase, but I’d be absolutely fascinated to know what motivates this naive certainty in the legitimacy and integrity of the legal establishment.

        DaveGinOly in reply to anglophones. | April 16, 2021 at 1:19 pm

        Ummmm, you are both psychoanalyzing the LI readership based on downvotes that come from a very small percentage of the readership, possibly fewer than half a dozen people. If you read more widely here on LI, you’ll see this particular type of activity comes in for criticism when, for instance, and a small number of activists are able to cause a university to remove a coffee shop from campus because of the shop’s lack of ideological purity.

        Mr. Branca himself has mentioned several times that although largely even-handed, Judge Cahill has made some questionable calls. Yet he’d also agree that there is room for disagreement over this point. If you don’t disagree that Cahill is biased, that’s fine. But others do disagree, and judging by the comment section here, if regular readers disagree with something, they can usually back it up with excellent arguments. They do not have “naive certainty” about anything and you do not know that those who have registered their disagreement with their downvotes are “naïve” in any way. And it never occurred to you that some of those downvotes may have come from newcomers like yourselves, who don’t understand the technicalities as well as the regular readers and who don’t know the backgrounds or educations of many of the readers here, many of whom are active and former attorneys, law professors, and LEOs.

    fogflyer in reply to DeepRunner. | April 15, 2021 at 10:35 pm

    I am just hoping the weekend break is long enough for a couple of jurors to test this theory themselves and ask their spouse to kneel on them while they lie on their stomach. I had my 200 pound friend do this and while it hurt (and left a small bruise on my back by the way) it did almost nothing to restrict my breathing.

Judges are one of the most overrated beliefs in our sacred system

in other words, they blow chunks

    David Ked in reply to REDACTED. | April 16, 2021 at 6:57 am

    Yes. Worse than people imagine. And Hennepin County Court and the MN Appellate is unbelievably corrupt.

    neils in reply to REDACTED. | April 16, 2021 at 12:06 pm

    Check out the reenactment on YouTube on “Louder with Crowder”.
    Spoiler Alert: He survived the ordeal

    DaveGinOly in reply to REDACTED. | April 16, 2021 at 1:32 pm

    This understanding goes back a long time:

    To get rid of the necessity of showing a criminal intent, and thereby further to enslave the people, by reducing them to the necessity of a blind, unreasoning submission to the arbitrary will of the government, and of a surrender of all right, on their own part, to judge what are their constitutional and natural rights and liberties, courts have invented another idea which they have incorporated among the pretended “maxims” upon which they act in criminal trials-namely, that “ignorance of the law excuses no one.” As if it were in the nature of things possible that there could be an excuse more absolute and complete! What else than ignorance of the law is it that excuses judges themselves for all their erroneous decisions? They are every day committing errors which would be crimes, but for their ignorance of the law. And yet these same judges, who claim to be learned in the law, and who yet could not hold their offices for a day but for the allowance which the law makes for their ignorance, are continually asserting it to be a “maxim” that ignorance of the law excuses no one!
    Lysander Spooner
    An Essay on the Trial by Jury
    pub. 1852

Nelson missed a huge opportunity to discredit this witness. He testified that the way he knows that carbon monoxide poisoning wasn’t involved was because of his oxygen saturation drawn at the hospital. By the time the test was taken he had already been intubated and was receiving 100% oxygen which of course decreases Carbon Monoxide and Carbon Dioxide forr that matter. In fact, on our monitors we measure entitle CO2 capnography to ensure oxygenation and ventilation is adequate. Of course his oxygen saturation is going to be high at that point, but he knows full well that his oxygen saturation was extremely low when he was on the ground. He definitely miss lead the jury on purpose. I can’t see how this isn’t malpractice or a miss trial

    wrpeterson in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    In testifying re: O2 sat at 98%, Tobin impeached his own testimony re: hypoxia. Jury never heard testimony as to mechanism that may have raised O2 sat (O2 in ambulance, CPR, etc). State is in a huge bind…

      TargaGTS in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 4:14 pm

      Very true. But, how many people on that jury have the subject-matter understanding to comprehend this point? I bet very few.

        wrpeterson in reply to TargaGTS. | April 15, 2021 at 4:23 pm

        That’s the nice thing about closing arguments – Nelson can hammer on this until the cows come home! “The state tells you that the cause of GF’s death was positional hypoxia due to subdual restraint, yet their own witness testified that GF’s O2 sat was normal”. Several folks are shitting bricks in the Gov’t Center in Mpls….

        gran2ten in reply to TargaGTS. | April 16, 2021 at 12:51 pm

        many jurors will have 4th to 5th grade comprehension level. A statistic based upon many aptitude tests.

      jbrecon2 in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 5:37 pm

      So are you implying they let that ride on purpose? They can now bring that point in closing?

        wrpeterson in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 7:22 pm

        Correct – I think Nelson may have realized that State screwed their case and wants to wait for closing arguments

          anglophones in reply to wrpeterson. | April 16, 2021 at 1:08 am

          That would be incredible if it happens. If Nelson spotted this in real time and intentionally closed testimony as early as possible in order to make the point in closing, he’s a master strategist. I’d have to apologise to him under my breath because I didn’t perceive him as *that* smart.

        gmac124 in reply to jbrecon2. | April 16, 2021 at 4:40 pm

        “If Nelson spotted this in real time and intentionally closed testimony as early as possible in order to make the point in closing”

        Don’t know if Nelson spotted this in real time but he had already rested the defense case before this happened. What really happened is that the prosecution tried to ambush the defense with some info that the withheld and ended up stepping on a rake instead. My hope is that Nelson has a collaboration to at least write the framework of the closing and at least one person realizes the significance of the states gaffe.

    carolinaandbaby in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    Cooooooorect!!! Nelson clearly needed a medical person….anyone….as a consultant during this whole trial because no one seems to know cause of death.

      There is no specific cause. They simply don’t know!!!!!!!! It’s a multitude of factors.

        DaveGinOly in reply to Pat Lee. | April 16, 2021 at 1:38 pm

        The prosecution’s own witnesses disagreed over the exact cause of GF’s death, except to say that Officer Chauvin was responsible. What rubbish.

        We’ve learned from COVID the importance of co-morbidities. Nelson seems to have missed a trick by not getting an expert to explain the potentially synergistic effects of co-morbidities. It was ludicrous enough for the state to claim that Chauvin’s actions had more to do with GF’s death than any one of his other health problems. But GF’s physiology was so thoroughly compromised by such a wide variety of ailments and conditions that it was preposterous for the state to discount them.

      Which makes it kinda hard to determine Chauvin killed Floyd, since on one seems to agree on what killed Floyd.

If his blood oxygen saturation was 98%, how can anyone, anywhere claim he died of asphyxia? It would seem that the blood gas data undercuts the entire prosecution case. I was frankly stunned by the 98% number. Am I missing something? Is the failure of the State to provide that data enough to overturn on appeal?

    wrpeterson in reply to 61north. | April 15, 2021 at 4:15 pm

    Indeed. Tobin got cute with the O2 sat info and torpedoed the State’s case. Hopefully, Nelson realized it (assume he did cuz he was quick to rest).

      Mike Wilson in reply to wrpeterson. | April 15, 2021 at 6:21 pm

      Wouldn’t that be poetic justice? Their a-hole move at the end provides the crucial info for acquittal. I love it.

      drednicolson in reply to wrpeterson. | April 16, 2021 at 10:03 am

      I expect Nelson caught on during direct just how badly the prosecution own-goaled itself and kept his cross to a minimum, on the hope that the blunder would not be realized and the prosecutor would miss the chance to recover on re-direct. When the state had NFQ, he rested ASAP and can now enjoy a mic-drop moment on closing.

this was not a trial, this was a railroading

justice in this country is finished

Robert Clingan | April 15, 2021 at 4:08 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yezb3P8z2Kc

Mr. Branca, the jury instructions discussion is LIVE right now!

Go to 37:30 the judge clearly says Tobin can only reference the pulse oximeter reading [not the ABG]. It is just after Blackwell asked for final clarification on what was admissable or not

https://youtu.be/bZNjyLw1wLc

    wrpeterson in reply to Astrov. | April 15, 2021 at 4:17 pm

    Don’t remember if pulse ox info was ever testified to – would’ve been in the rig or the ER. ABG/VBG was done post-mortem, I think.

    jbrecon2 in reply to Astrov. | April 15, 2021 at 5:41 pm

    Wow….I can’t believe he didn’t declare a mistrial.

      TargaGTS in reply to jbrecon2. | April 15, 2021 at 6:56 pm

      It seems that it may not just be the jury that is concerned with riotous throngs descending upon his work and home.

      Astrov in reply to jbrecon2. | April 16, 2021 at 8:45 am

      Day 4 the paramedic referenced Zoll machine with oximeter I don’t know if that counts as “entered into evidence”.

Mr. Branca, my understanding is the blood oxygen saturation levels that the defense had access to were taken with a pulse oximeter and the blood tests that showed the actual blood oxygen and carbon monoxide levels at the hospital were the ones they “discovered” yesterday evening. The entirety of Tobin’s rebuttal on the blood oxygen was using the arterial blood tests that the prosecution had “discovered” the evening before, even if he was referring to the oxygen saturation portions of them and not the monoxide portions. Does this match your understanding of the issue and how does that avoid the “… mistrial. Pure and simple.” statement the judge made earlier if the prosecution or Tobin brought up that test results even existed that the jury didn’t already know about?

    hrlsswndr in reply to hrlsswndr. | April 15, 2021 at 5:11 pm

    Also, as a follow up, if it is your understanding that this falls within the judge’s declaration, is there an option for the judge to allow the jury to deliberate and only declare a mistrial if Chauvin is found guilty, but not do so and allow the verdict if there is an acquittal?

    EddieRo in reply to hrlsswndr. | April 15, 2021 at 5:13 pm

    At this point, if I was prosecution I would be hoping for a mistrial to try again later. Otherwise, there is no way you can rest your case on claiming positional asphyxia when testing showed O2 levels in blood were normal. Not saying that it couldn’t be attributed to life saving efforts, however, that was not argued.

    So what jury has is a case claiming the position Floyd was in did not allow him to get enough lung function to oxygenate his blood, even though it’s at 98%, that a blood choke did not happen, and that Floyd had drugs in his system and even took some as late as when he was put in the car. Moreover, he wasn’t struggling to breath, as state witness claimed his breathing was normal.

    Furthermore, I would be extremely skeptical as to why the state kept exonerating evidence from defense (98% O2 levels) that would clearly have shown Floyd was not having issues with oxygen exchange.

      61north in reply to EddieRo. | April 15, 2021 at 5:54 pm

      Oops. Sorry for the down vote. Fat fingers and a small phone. I tried to fix it, but can’t. I totally agree with your comment.

      hrlsswndr in reply to EddieRo. | April 15, 2021 at 6:05 pm

      That was one thing I was thinking listening to that testimony as well, you have the same person arguing that Floyd died because of a lack of oxygen to his heart while arguing that his blood oxygen level was actually great, without saying anything about lifesaving techniques raising those levels. I know what his intent was, but what he actually said to me that sounds like the defense’s theory that his heart failed because of the blockage and other complications and not because of any inability to get the oxygen.

        buck61 in reply to hrlsswndr. | April 15, 2021 at 9:26 pm

        too late now, the state had a chance to fix it and didn’t address it, they were in such a panic that they didn’t think through exactly what the consequences of bringing tobin back in would do to the case. if they didn’t cover all the bases.

      lurker9876 in reply to EddieRo. | April 16, 2021 at 9:21 am

      I have to question the need or want for a retrial. What more evidence can they come up with to build a better case? They had no evidence and were not able to prove that Chauvin actually caused GF’s death. Fowler’s testimony, based on his and his panel’s findings. Blackwell was not able to break him and they won’t be able to break him in a retrial. Nelson would bring in more medical experts in the retrial.

      They just don’t have the case.

    fogflyer in reply to hrlsswndr. | April 15, 2021 at 10:39 pm

    Yes, I have this same question and it seems rather crucial.
    Was the O2 content from the ABG draw actually admitted into evidence at a much earlier date, or was it only the pulse oximeter data? Very big difference!

It should 100% be a mistrial

    broomhandle in reply to geronl. | April 15, 2021 at 4:59 pm

    I don’t totally disagree but after watching and reading this I am thinking it should be 100% not guilty.

Should there be a conviction, in your opinion, what is the likelihood of an appeal? And, how likely is it that an appeal would succeed?

Now the jury goes home for a long weekend of watching the news reports of rioting, burning, and looting in Minneapolis and its suburbs. Each juror has to ask, “Do I want a BLM mob to come after me and my family if I don’t vote for the verdict they want?”

    Midfiaudiophile in reply to OldProf2. | April 15, 2021 at 5:12 pm

    Which prosecutor was it that implied that Nelson planted the pills in the squad car and Mercedes on redirect?

    Is there any way that’s censurable?

      Blackwell, its always Blackwell. He is the embodiment of scum, and the type that give lawyers a bad name

        Midfiaudiophile in reply to Smooth23. | April 16, 2021 at 9:16 am

        Apparently almost-always Blackwell… Schleicher was the one with those stupid Chauvin-maskless hospital photos that served no purpose in establishing fact.

        That’s one question I’d like to ask Nelson (and Schleicher, for that matter) if I ever get the chance- why he allowed that exhibit. I get that it cuts both ways, as it shows the Chauvin showed up to the hospital to wait to hear how things turned out, but at the same time we’ve seen the histrionics that some people go into at seeing someone being maskless in public, much less in a hospital, much less surrounded by a dozen other people wearing their masks, especially in a case centered around reckless disregard.

        I’m not sure the benefit to defense of “It shows he cared” carries much weight when he had been ordered to go there by his supervisor, either.

        Just really weird.

    gran2ten in reply to OldProf2. | April 16, 2021 at 1:10 pm

    One disturbing issue to surface from this trial is juror indirect intimidation, through fears of MOB reaction. This may taint further trials. How far down this slippery slope we’ve come.

Get ready for more rioting.

Prosecutor who said Adam Toledo had gun in his hand ‘not fully informed’

https://wgntv.com/news/chicago-news/prosecutor-who-said-adam-toledo-had-gun-in-his-hand-not-fully-informed/

“but had never been previously produced when the parties had subpoenaed Floyd’s medical records.”

Stew on this. What is the probability that the surfacing of this new evidence was spontaneous? It begs the question of what other evidence was withheld from the defense. This is especially true in light of the 500 docs dumped during the trial. THIS NEW EVIDENCE ONLY SURFACED BECAUSE IT MIGHT BENEFIT THE PROSECUTION.

This. Trial. Was. A. Lynching.

UPDATE: STATE & DEFENSE DISCUSSION OF JURY INSTRUCTIONS WITH JUDGE CAHILL

Page will just refresh if link clicked, but will then include the updated content.

Congrats to Mpls. Murders up 64% over last year and you have lost hundreds of officers, and you are going to lose a lot more.

Love how the police chief scummily threw Chauvin under the bus. I am sure that boosted Mpls police morale.

Mpls is setting a record on how quickly a great city can be destroyed by idiot politicians through allowing riots and bs prosecutions.

Tobin seriously torpedoed the State’s case with his rebuttal:

1. The respiratory physiology journal issue – Tobin admitted that these journals should come up in a Pubmed search. Dr. Fowler clearly stated that he did a Pubmed search and didn’t come up with anything. Implication? Tobin is quoting from an obscure section of an article and possible taking it out of context.

2. The carbon monoxide/oxygen issue – based on what I understand about medicine and resuscitation – someone during/immediately after a resuscitation should have a high oxygen saturation – intubated, on 100% oxygen via breathing machine. But that wasn’t qualified by Dr. Tobin. By trying to demonstrate that GF didn’t have a high level of CO (and by extension couldn’t have died of CO poisoning) he inadvertently suggested that GF actually had an oxygen saturation of 98% at the time of his deaht. Implication? GF couldn’t have died of low oxygen levels with a saturation of 98%!!!

Bad, bad, bad day for the prosecution.

Char Char Binks | April 15, 2021 at 6:12 pm

Hee Hu lie down behind car get exhausted.

There isn’t much that everyone would agree on about this case, but I think one thing might be that out of all of the people involved, from junkies, to overly aggressive or oblivious cops, the biggest scumbags possessing the lowest morals were the prosecutors — and it isn’t even close.

They have absolutely no honor.

The State got their 98% oxygen saturation into the record, but where does that leave their foundation for the claim of Positional Asphyxia? They never made the case as to how the oxygen level improved from the time GF was placed in the ambulance and when the arterial blood was drawn at the hospital.

Without any foundation as to how it improved, all the jury should conclude is that the blood oxygen saturation when GF was placed in the ambulance was also 98%, which would effectively destroy their Cause of Death claim of Positional Asphyxia.

I have no idea if the State will try to work an explanation into their closing argument, but without any saturation percentage at the time of death on the record, they should not be allowed any explanation as to potential improvement. And without an explanation, their COD claim cannot be substantiated.

    buck61 in reply to dji9424. | April 15, 2021 at 9:33 pm

    they have no baseline to work from, fowler couldn’t give a baseline, non of the state’s witnesses could provide a baseline. how can you show improvement when you have no data as a starting point

      dji9424 in reply to buck61. | April 16, 2021 at 9:37 am

      Exactly, the only measurement they have is that it was 98% when tested at the hospital, they produced no evidence of any other measurement. Thus, the only valid inference the jury can make is that it was 98% when he was being restrained. That demolishes the State’s theory that Cause of Death was due to Positional Asphyxia.

      They schemed to include this measurement in the record, now they must live with it.

Midfiaudiophile | April 15, 2021 at 6:25 pm

Who’s this Iger guy and why did he call in? Is it because neither Frank nor Eldridge could argue with a straight face that someone that wasn’t even trying to injure the other party should be culpable for Murder 2, and so having the discussion over the telephone would be more seemly?

carolinaandbaby | April 15, 2021 at 6:48 pm

Dr. Tobin reminds me of Dr. Fauci in some many aspects. I really doubt he has seen a real living patient in 40 years.

By showing a excellent O 2 saturation (after intubation ect) the state supported the idea that good resuscitation was being done on the decedent. (rebuts neglect of resuscitation as cause). The CO level should still have been measurable 30-60 min even with 100% O2 ventilation (CO half life is 60 min with non-rebreather and 20 min with hyperbaric O2. Han et al J Emerg Med . dec 6 2020. GF was not on hyperbaric so 60 min half life. Not detectible = CO not contributing to his demise. ) So any responsibility officer Chauvin might have inadvertently had in holding him down “near” the exhaust is removed. I really didn’t like Dr Fowler bringing up CO as a contributing cause as it could be twisted to still convict the officer. So now the state is chasing it’s tail bringing back testimony about a minor issue that almost caused a mistrial and certainly lays an additional foundation for appeal, and exonerates Chauvin from that cause of death.

Besides relying on pretrial assumptions by jurors and implicit threats to the city by ongoing riots what exactly is the states strategy?

    EddieRo in reply to Dr S. | April 15, 2021 at 9:03 pm

    The state did not argue that the reason for O2 sat at 98% was because of resuscitation efforts. It simply tried to rebut the CO argument. However, I think it did itself more harm by doing so, as the jury will have now have to reason two contradictions for a guilty verdict.

Steve Richter | April 15, 2021 at 8:48 pm

how does Chauvin expect to be acquited by not testifying? You have to explain what happened to the jury.

The focus of the defense should have been that the officer did the best he could to both detain/arrest Floyd and get him to stay still until the paramedics arrived.

    Mike Wilson in reply to Steve Richter. | April 15, 2021 at 9:23 pm

    Andrew or another lawyer can probably explain the best, but it’s commonly understood that the knots the prosecution can twist someone into on cross-ex are best avoided. They’ve got so many traps to spring that you don’t want the defendant to be up there on the stand. Almost certainly more harm than good to the case.

      Steve Richter in reply to Mike Wilson. | April 15, 2021 at 10:24 pm

      what is there to be trapped about? He did not set out to kill the man. He did what he thought was best. Relied on his training. It all comes down to why he kept Floyd immobile. Make your case to the jury. Otherwise, he has no chance.

        the state has the burden to prove beyond reasonab;le to all 12 jurors, chauvin doesn’t have to prove anything., just look at how many witnesses were exposed during cross examination on both sides, brodd did poorly, same with some of the mpd and a couple of the state’s experts where it felt like the witness was making the case for the person doing the cross examining. chauvin could easily come across as unlikable or not answering the questions as being 100% truthful.

          Brave Sir Robbin in reply to buck61. | April 16, 2021 at 12:11 am

          “the state has the burden to prove beyond reasonab;le to all 12 jurors, chauvin doesn’t have to prove anything.,”

          That’s the theory, even the ideal, but, in this case, not the reality.

        stacytracy in reply to Steve Richter. | April 16, 2021 at 12:18 am

        You have obviously not been subject to cross examination. I have, by a mediocre lawyer. They ask questions (and make facial gestures) in such a way that your answer sounds bad (because it is out of context) . Blackwell, et al, are very experienced attorneys. They would make mincemeat of Chauvin.

          OldCop876 in reply to stacytracy. | April 16, 2021 at 5:31 pm

          Stacytracy, you are 100% correct. It is always a risk to put a defendant on the stand, but particularly with cops. This is a case of “a little knowledge being a dangerous thing.” Cops think they know enough about the courtroom to spar with a good attorney. They don’t. In the same way that I have practiced an arm-bar takedown thousands of times, and no attorney is going to be able to avoid going down when I use it on him, that attorney has practiced just as rigorously to lay a trap with his questions for a cop who thinks he or she is a match for him.

          Nothing good can come from putting Chauvin on the stand in this case. Only people who have never been subjected to a withering cross-examination think otherwise. You might risk it with a super-sympathetic defendant and a mediocre prosecutor, but neither one of those are present in this case. Just my opinion.

        James B. Shearer in reply to Steve Richter. | April 16, 2021 at 12:37 am

        “what is there to be trapped about? ..”

        He could be asked nitpicky questions about his training and what the use of force rules were. It might turn out that Chauvin doesn’t have a 100% correct understanding of the rules he was supposed to be following. This could look bad to the jury.

        Or maybe Chauvin is just not a very likeable guy.

    9:29 blackwell would have played the 9:29 video, stopping it every few seconds and ask chauvin what he was doing, how he felt, why did you do this, why didn’t you do that. chauvin was smart not to testify
    i’m nearly 100% certain that blackwell will play the entire video again as part of state’s closing, playing to the emotions of the jury.

      Steve Richter in reply to buck61. | April 15, 2021 at 10:31 pm

      there is no choice if he wants to be acquitted, How does the prosecution argue against him when he says he thought it best that Floyd stay still. That he was delirious and the crowd was getting hostile. Based on his training and experience, he did not think Floyd would have any trouble breathing while being kept immobile. Was expecting the ambulance at any moment, just stay still until then.

        anglophones in reply to Steve Richter. | April 16, 2021 at 12:54 am

        Even if you don’t understand why this doesn’t happen, there’s clearly an experiential reason that most defendants in criminal trials don’t take the stand themselves. You say that it’s simple enough to just stick to the facts or whatever but those trial lawyers are absolute experts in getting people to trip themselves up with contradictions, emotional outbursts, logical inconsistencies etc. They especially focus on a defendant’s past and events that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to bring into the trial, which in this case would’ve meant dealing with Chauvin’s spotty disciplinary record.

        Personally, I think maybe he could’ve benefited from taking the stand too, because that feels intuitively like the right answer. But it’s usually not. We will never know what damaging stuff the prosecution would’ve dragged up or how they would’ve tied Chauvin up in knots, so we can only conceive of a broadly positive hypothetical outcome that just isn’t realistic.

        He absolutely could’ve done additional harm to his case and it’s unclear whether there were even *potential” benefits. The jurors who’ve already made their minds up wouldn’t have been convinced by Chauvin’s testimony regardless. And the jurors whose minds are open have already been presented with more than enough to acquit should they be willing to do so.

        gmac124 in reply to Steve Richter. | April 16, 2021 at 5:17 pm

        It’s better to keep your mouth shut and be thought stupid than to open your mouth and prove it.

      lurker9876 in reply to buck61. | April 15, 2021 at 10:35 pm

      Similar to what they did to Barry Brodd. Plus they will go back into his past and destroy him.

I’m not sure where I heard this statistic, or if it’s correct, but I remember reading somewhere that one police officer a day was shot in America. Even if that number isn’t exact, I know it’s a lot. It may be cheesy but I would like to say thank you to anyone on this site that is current or former law enforcement or security. Most people in this country, including me would be terrified to go to work every day and deal with that risk. It makes me really angry to see Americans regardless of their race demonize police officers. Every single one of these cases that I’ve seen where an “unarmed black suspect” was shot or killed was a case of the suspect fighting with the police and/ or refusing to follow generally reasonable directions. BLM could save far more lives if they put out the message that if you’re arrested or stopped, be respectful, keep your hands in view of the officer, ask if its ok to go in your glove compartment or your bag for your info. Even if the police are abusive or rude or arresting you for something you haven’t done, DON’T RESIST ARREST AND ACT THREATENING. But of course they expect police to act completely perfect every time and never mention that all these young men would still be alive if they had acted reasonably regardless of their skin color. Thank you all for the gun advice the other day. I’m really praying for Minnesota and America in general, because I wouldn’t be able to convict DC if I was on this jury.

Katie J. Sullivan 🍀

    Mike Wilson in reply to katesully. | April 15, 2021 at 9:27 pm

    Correct. BLM is killing black lives. That’s indisputable. It’s not the lives that matter, it’s the dollars and the houses they can buy.

    CuriousObserver in reply to katesully. | April 15, 2021 at 11:05 pm

    You’re welcome. But more importantly, you are correct. On all points…

    gran2ten in reply to katesully. | April 16, 2021 at 1:25 pm

    Using common sense when being stopped by police, comply with their requests! Will change statistics for reducing these types of incidences. Common denominator; RESISTING!

Char Char Binks | April 15, 2021 at 9:23 pm

The car exhaust issue backfired.

I think kevinbrown had it right yesterday; CO will only confuse the jury. If it doesn’t convince them, they may see it as raising unreasonable doubt, muddying the waters. If they believe it, they could blame Chauvin for exposing floyd to deadly fumes for nine and a half minutes. Either way, it brought the prosecution’s best witness back, giving him another chance to bewilder the jury.

Fowler could end up being worse for the defense than Brodd.

    tobin testified that floyd’s oxygen levels were fine with out explaining how he went from an oxygen deficit to a normal level.
    it completely undermined the expert testimony from the state the floyd didn’t have enough oxygen in his system. it will be up to nelson to hammer that point home in closing where the state can’t introduce new rebuttal testimony or evidence. the state has major clean up to do on this very point and i’m not sure they can do it without an expert

Someone said that the MPD policy was not to do CPR because of COVID. I must have missed the part of the trial where that was covered, but if that is true it would be HUGE for the defense and I would expect to hear them repeating it over and over again.

Does anyone know if that was covered at trial, or if it is even correct? The person I was talking to said one of the medical witnesses, maybe an EMT, covered it.

    BillyHW in reply to Thatch. | April 15, 2021 at 9:43 pm

    When was this?

    buck61 in reply to Thatch. | April 15, 2021 at 9:54 pm

    i don’t recall that testimony, there is video evidence of cpr being done in the ems squad away from the cup foods store., there is also evidence of the machine doing the cpr

      I did not remember it either. It sounds plausible that the cops might have been told not to do that and let the EMTs come, but as I say, I never saw it. Maybe they were thinking of mouth to mouth, which is not done anymore anyway if my understanding is correct.

      I think the best evidence it is not true is that the defense has not been hammering it.

The Friendly Grizzly | April 15, 2021 at 10:23 pm

They would be dismissed for the day, and until Monday at 9:00am CT, at which time they would return to court to hear the closing arguments of the state and the defense, receive their jury instructions, and begin their deliberations.

Anyone thinking what I’m thinking? That one or another of the networks will jump the gun and try to interview one or more jurors at their homes? Or, not do that but park a clearly marked network vehicle near or in front of one or more jury homes?

    I certainly wouldn’t put it past them if any of the jurors have been identified yet. Which I’m sure the media has, since they’ve been in the courtroom and able to see them.

    Fat_Freddys_Cat in reply to The Friendly Grizzly. | April 16, 2021 at 8:15 am

    Hmm tried to upvote your comment but it wouldn’t work.

    Yes, I think the media will try to find a way to put the squeeze on the jurors to reach the “correct” verdict.

      The Friendly Grizzly in reply to Fat_Freddys_Cat. | April 16, 2021 at 10:31 am

      There is something dodgy in the up-tick thing where if there is a block quote in the one you want to up-tick, it doesn’t work.

      gran2ten in reply to Fat_Freddys_Cat. | April 16, 2021 at 1:34 pm

      There will be a lot of pressure between jurors. Some will go along to get along. Someone or more will dominate and the job is to persuade others. Also, jury instructions are a pain for the layperson to understand. As juror on a 3 months trial, two men argued, got up to fight each other. It’s a hot bed! This is going to be a contentious environment,

stogiefan1953 | April 15, 2021 at 10:50 pm

I have really enjoyed reading this blog during the Chauvin trial. I cannot find one nearly as reasoned, informative and balanced. AFB provides very thoughtful insight.
Personally I believe the defense has created serious reasonable doubt as to Chauvin’s guilt.

That said, does anyone reading or commenting on this blog seriously believe these 12 jurors will come back with anything but a guilty verdict on one of the three charges.

There is absolutely no way that—faced with the possibility of serious bodily harm, death, having their houses burned down, etc, — ANY of these jurors can be expected to do anything but return with a guilty verdict on one of the charges.

It isn’t right but it’s a cold harsh reality,

There will be one of two ends of this trial. First, there may a deadlocked jury. More likely, there will be a mistrial because one or more of the jurors will report to Carhill of the threats made to them by fellow jurors if they do not support conviction on all counts. NEVER underestimate the lefts ability to overreach. Or, the honesty of honest people.

I have a question for anyone on this forum who is law enforcement or involved with or friends with law enforcement. I’ve heard anecdotal evidence that some police officers are afraid to use appropriate force with black suspects. They don’t want themselves or their families to suffer through being accused of being racist monsters by certain media outlets. I’ve heard this has led to officers being killed or badly hurt by suspects. Does anyone know if this is true?

I know I have said it before but if you are in law enforcement or security it may seem like America is against you right now. But most people, even most people who have been arrested, know you do a job none of us would have the courage to do. Almost everyone sane knows that the protesters and rioters are not telling the truth about the vast majority of police. Stay safe out there!

    Jmaquis in reply to katesully. | April 16, 2021 at 6:32 am

    Yes, you are absolutely right! We have a son who was living in Seattle and was on the police force, and he retired last May and moved to the opposite coast. There is no question that LEO lives will be compromised or lost by the new regulations that protect the criminal and give no relief to the hard working officer. He told us in no uncertain terms that an officer’s life could easily be ruined by an incident on any given day. Now he is in training for a new career in another state.

      lurker9876 in reply to Jmaquis. | April 16, 2021 at 7:24 am

      That is why I’m surprised Kim Potter was still working for MPD. Her husband is retired LEO, though. I wonder if the LEO’s will simply let these criminals go and stop going after them?

      Net result is that they will stop working. Just drive around and just talk to people in the store.

      My brother spent some time in Nigeria and it’s worse there than here. He had to travel in convoys on highways and in town, he had to have a chauffeur. People ignore the stop signs in spite of the police officer standing by the stop signs. The police officer will not ticket anyone running stop signs. Also, people will notice dead bodies on the side of the road and ignore them. The dead bodies would not be picked up for days.

      I think that is where Rashida, Ilhan, etc., are coming from…

    OldCop876 in reply to katesully. | April 16, 2021 at 5:50 pm

    Hi, I’m now a retired LEO, but the answer to your question often depends on the jurisdiction where the officer finds himself/herself. I started out in an inner-city setting in a state Capitol that over the years, for lack of a better term, had political leadership that became “woke”. At that point, even completely reasonable uses of force came under often unfair levels of review and even prosecution, such that my fellow officers just decided to “let things slide” rather than put up with the BS.

    Then I moved and began working in a more rural jurisdiction 100 miles south in the same state. The difference was like day and night. I can well remember being in court at trial when one of my judges would ask when the defense would start up their patter on “excessive force”, “Did your client resist the officer?”, and when the defense responded, “Yes, but…”, the judge would cut them off and say, “Serves him right, move along Counselor.” In that part of the state, officers were fine with their jobs because only truly unreasonable uses of force were heavily scrutinized. We had a few bad apples fired in the county, but nobody ever quit or changed their behavior on calls for fear of consequences for doing their jobs. I earned a lot less money in that place than I did up at the Capitol, but I was much happier at work.

I read somewhere that MPD policy in May 2020 recommended against CPR because of COVID. Was there any testimony about this?

GF clearly said he had COVID when he was resisted getting in the squad car. The officers had no way of knowing if he was telling the truth. It seems reasonable that if someone claimed they had COVID to not start CPR without proper protective gear and instead wait for EMS (esp in May 2020 when there was still so little known about the virus).

Thoughts???

    That is a good point. No thought was really given to the safety of the officers. I guess you could argue they were in close proximity to Floyd anyway during the wrestling, but it might explain why they wouldn’t turn him over and wanted to keep him facing away from them.

    The problem if I am a juror is that Chauvin will have told Nelson precisely what he was thinking. So if Nelson brings up new stuff now it just seems like it would not be genuine. Sure that might have been a concern had they the cops thought of it, but if it has not been mentioned to this point then adding it in during closing would be a pretty obvious sign it was not what Chauvin was actually thinking. The “if you don’t like this explanation I have another” doesn’t really work as well when talking about someone’s motivation as it does for trying to figure out cause of death after the fact.

    This makes me think the hostile crowd was foremost on Chauvin’s mind since that is what Nelson has harped upon.

Mr Branca
Thank you for your unbiased reporting over the length of the trial. Even here in the UK the MSM have been very economical with the truth in most cases.
Could the defence not speak to Dr. Fowler over the weekend and address any points made by prosecution while he was out of contact during summing up. Or in view of the prosecutions ” deceit ” use zoom on Monday to rebutt?
Also did you notice the smirk on Mr Blacfields face as he rested the prosecution case. As another commented it looked like he was happy he had got one over on the judge. Should this be bought to the attention of the court and defence?

I don’t know why the judge allowed Tobin to give a rebuttal to Fowlers testimony – i.e. give the State a second kick of the can but having done so I thought that witnesses are not supposed to view or read about testimony of prior witnesses. Maybe I am wrong about that but if in fact that is the case it is obvious that Tobin did not abide by that rule. Tobin obviously reviewed the testimony of Fowler and was coached by the Prosecution. If in fact it is true witnesses are not allowed to view testimony from other witnesses I wonder why Nelson did not ask Tobin “did you view the testimony of the Defenses last witness”?

    dden65 in reply to Keith_. | April 16, 2021 at 5:34 am

    He said he listened to the testimony live. Whether this gets round and legal matters as he was released by the court. But even that to me sounds wrong. How can a witness after giving evence listen to live coverage and then contact the prosecution.?

    StandardMurse in reply to Keith_. | April 16, 2021 at 6:27 am

    Experts are allowed to view other testimony. Fowler reviewed the testimony of previous experts and stated that on the stand.

      OK but therefore how can Tobin , who read Fowler’s statement prior to going in the box sit at home a d then come up with an idea for a rebuttal? Surely this must mean that all trials without exception must be televised so witnesses can come back to rebutt . Cases could go on for years. This cannot be fair .

“Ladies and gentlemen of our jury, I ask you to remember the first thing you were told at this trial and the last. First the prosecution told you Mr. Floyd died gasping for oxygen and the last witness testified that Mr. Floyd’s blood oxygen level was normal at the time of the autopsy. How can these two statements both be true?”

    Keith_ in reply to judgenot. | April 17, 2021 at 3:37 am

    This is brilliant! I hope that Nelson opens his closing arguments with a statement like that. If it has not already occurred to the Jurors how dishonest Tobin’s testimony was on the last day of the trial – this should get them thinking and perhaps make them inclined to disregard all of Tobin’s testimony as he is obviously not above misleading the Jurors. I don’t know if Nelson is allowed to do this but if he is he should specifically point out that on the final day of the trial Tobin and the prosecutor deliberately tried to mislead the Jury with this disingenuous testimony.

    luckydog in reply to judgenot. | April 17, 2021 at 7:17 pm

    Some additional food-for-thought:

    The police did not use a leg restraint on GF. They did not use a choke hold on GF. They did not use pepper spray on GF. They did not use a baton on GF. They did not use a taser on GF. They did not use a gun on GF.

    What the police did do, is handcuff and pin GF down – against his will – in the course of a lawful arrest. Thay also called an ambulance to treat him for the non-fatal injuries he received while resisting being placed into the police car.

    ***
    It is reasonable to believe that no one who was present that day wished to see GF die.

    It is reasonable to believe that the prosecution completely failed to prove that DC did not follow the use of force training he had received. Even the prosecutions own use of force experts agreed with the defense’ questions concerning the proper and lawful use of force.

    It is reasonable to believe that the prosecution completely failed to prove that DC holding GF down – during a lawful arrest – led to a restricted level of oxygen to GF’ brain or heart. Even the prosecutions own medical experts testified that GF had no external or internal damage to his neck or back, and had a normal level of oxygen in his blood when he was tested at the hospital ER.

    It is also reasonable to believe that the combination of: 1) a dangerous level of an opioid drug, 2) poor heart health, and 3) overexertion due to resisting arrest, was too much for GF’ body to handle. And that combination led to his death.

Fat_Freddys_Cat | April 16, 2021 at 8:08 am

The “new evidence” ploy was a rather clever move by the prosecution. If allowed, it gives them the chance to get the last word in. If denied and they lose, they can claim “well we would have won but the judge wouldn’t let us present all our evidence! Mob, you know what to do!”

George Floyd’s family got a golden coffins and expensive funerals through Gofundme and viewings plus 27 million dollars through the last COVID bill. All before the start of the trial. We had all kinds of riots, looting, arson, newly purchased homes, and the kneeling/capitulation/bowing of heads.

Remember that one FBI guy that laid down in prone position with hands behind his back?

What about Duarte’s family? Will Minneapolis go to Pelosi and ask for another 27 million dollar check from the next stimulus or infrastructure bill? All before Kim Potter’s trial?

Pelosi would say something like, “Oh sure, no problem! I’ll add that to the next bill.” and write a blank check for them.

Then what about Adam Toledo? Will Chicago write his family 27 million dollars?

Guess the families of Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown weren’t smart enough to play on the propaganda. Oh wait….maybe they will file a lawsuit to get that 27 million dollars!!

Sense a pattern here…

Do the jury have access to the Arterial Blood Gas analysis originally generated for the ER doc? Nelson referenced it in his cross but only carbon dioxide (not monoxide).
If they can see that because it was mentioned in evidence what about the Zoll machine readings from the ambulance? That was mentioned by paramedic on Day 4. What blood oxygenation did that find? If that was normal as well then asphyxiation is a non-runner.

I have my doubts about the validity of using oxygen saturation from arterial blood gas analysis in cardiac arrest case, and here is why. The moment EMS arrives and confirms cardiac arrest, we begin to administer 100% oxygen at very high pressure to ventilate the patient. I’ve treated hundreds of cardiac arrest patients and this is done without exception. Normal air contains only 21% oxygen, so we are, in effect, giving the patient a “dose” of oxygen which is five times normal, all the way to the hospital.

Typically, on arrival at the hospital, oxygen saturation appears great, in a patient who is clinically and objectively dead. This is why the doctors ignore this, and look to readings of PCO2, which is the level of carbon dioxide, and the blood pH, to determine how well the resuscitation is going. About the only time I’ve seen an O2 saturation even being remarked on was when it indicated that the oxygen line had become disconnected from the wall outlet.

All I’m saying here is that George Floyd’s blood gas results on arrival in the ER bear absolutely no relationship to his status while on the ground, before the arrival of EMS.

    Astrov in reply to OldCop876. | April 17, 2021 at 3:18 am

    Thanks. But I was wondering more from the evidence point of view. The problem now for the prosecution is Nelson could use the 98% without contextualising it as you have. If the Zoll monitor also showed normal oxygenation and that reading could be used (as Zoll was referenced on Day 4) to a lay person it would by hard to say lack of oxygen killed GF.
    Basically are all these Zoll and ABG readings entered as evidence or is it only the things the judge admitted explicitly during the trial?

“Tunnel vison”. That is my description of the difference in presentations to the jury. The state wants you to zoom in and focus solely on 3-4 minutes of a of a situtation that is quite complex with multiple variables at play constantly. The defense’s job is to explain that officers are trained to take all of this into account and make rapid decisions and are sometimes wrong. But lacking any evidence of intentionality, Chauvin is not guilty of committing a crime.
Tunnel vision is also how we can explain many, if not most of the recent racial incidents like the Army Sargeant who’s been charged with assault. The video is part of the mob action, it’s part of the set up to taunt a person, especially one with some form of authority, into doing something that looks aggressive thorugh the tunnel vision of the camera phone. The viewing public only sees a narrow snippet, and make a mental judgment without seeing the totality of the circumstances. You could also call this “Vid bite” instead of “sound bite” reporting. We now have a game being played where authority figures are being taunted/goaded into action that is then recorded. It’s childish and intentional and is proving to have lethal physical and legal consequences. Need more understanding? Why do BLM/Antifa mobs carry cameras? They set you up to do something unethical or hopefully “Illegal” and that video snippet is all you will ever see from them and the mainstream media. What would you do, if surrounding by a mob of teens or young adults taunting you and not letting you walk away? Now, what would you do if, after fighting a large male for ten minutes, finally getting him on the ground, knowing you have medical attention on the way, while a mob is shouting at you, is threatening violence, and you cannot walk away because it is your job to stay? What would you do, when you have become the victim of mob harrasment and the camera phone has been turned into a weapon, and by duty or by “mob restraint”- being surrounded, you are not allowed to walk away?– What would you do………..?

Terrific wire-to-wire analysis by AFB.

How you play your cards is often more important than the cards you were dealt.

***
At first the prosecution told us that the flow of blood to GF’ brain was stopped by pressure to the back of GF’ neck, by DC. That meant his brain did not have enough oxygen; which killed him.

Use of force experts, and medical experts, for both the prosecution and defense testified that it is not possible to cut off the flow of blood to the brain by applying pressure to just one side of the neck.

If it was not possible to cut off the flow of blood from just pressure to the back of GF’ neck, it is reasonable to conclude that DC did not stop blood from flowing to GF’ brain during his arrest.

The medical examiner that performed the autopsy testified that GF did not have any external or internal damage to his neck.

***
Then the prosecution told us that because GF was flat on his stomach, and some of DC’ weight was on GF’ neck and back, GF’ could not expand his lungs enough to add a normal level of oxygen to his blood. That meant his heart and/ or brain did not have enough oxygen; which killed him.

The prosecutors’ medical experts testified that being kept on your stomach is dangerous and can lead to death. The defenses medical experts testified that being kept on your stomach can be dangerous, if you are overweight and have a large belly. GF was a very tall and heavy man, but he was not overweight and did not have a large belly.

The medical examiner that performed the autopsy testified that GF did not have any external or internal damage to his back.

***
On the last day of testimony, the prosecutors’ medical expert testified that GF had a normal level of oxygen in his blood, when he was tested at the hospital ER. An actual test, not estimates made by viewing body camera videos, etc.

If GF died with a normal level of oxygen in his blood, it is reasonable to conclude that his lungs were able to add a normal level of oxygen to his blood during his arrest.

***
The prosecutors’ medical experts testified that GF’ autopsy reported that he had an enlarged heart due to High Blood Pressure (HBP), and had blocked arteries to his heart. They also testified that HBP and/ or blocked arteries can lead to death.

The prosecutors’ medical experts testified that GF’ autopsy reported that he had the opioid drug fentanyl in in his blood,. They also testified that the level of fentanyl in GF’ blood was high enough to cause death.

The medical examiner that performed the autopsy testified that if GF had died alone at home, he would have decided that GF’ death was due to a drug overdose.

***
The police did not use a leg restraint on GF. They did not use a choke hold on GF. They did not use pepper spray on GF. They did not use a baton on GF. They did not use a taser on GF. They did not use a gun on GF.

What the police did do, is handcuff and pin GF down – against his will – in the course of a lawful arrest. Thay also called an ambulance to treat him for the non-fatal injuries he received while resisting being placed into the police car.

***
It is reasonable to believe that no one who was present that day wished to see GF die.

It is reasonable to believe that the prosecution completely failed to prove that DC did not follow the use of force training he had received. Even the prosecutions own use of force experts agreed with the defense’ questions concerning the proper and lawful use of force.

It is reasonable to believe that the prosecution completely failed to prove that DC holding GF down – during a lawful arrest – led to a restricted level of oxygen to GF’ brain or heart. Even the prosecutions own medical experts testified that GF had no external or internal damage to his neck or back, and had a normal level of oxygen in his blood when he was tested at the hospital ER.

It is also reasonable to believe that the combination of: 1) a dangerous level of an opioid drug, 2) poor heart health, and 3) overexertion due to resisting arrest, was too much for GF’ body to handle. And that combination led to his death.

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