“Slam dunk” case against Derek Chauvin – Floyd brother
George Floyd’s brother Philonise Floyd appeared live on NBC’s Today show this morning, alongside civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, who is representing the family.
Philonise Floyd indicated the family was feeling confident about the trial, even though it is rare for a police officer who has killed a civilian to be arrested and charged, let alone convicted, of murder.
“We know that this is a slam dunk, because the video is the proof, that’s all we need,” Philonise said, using the common basketball term.
Bystander video that went viral last May shows (now former) Minneapolis police officer kneeling on George Floyd’s neck as Floyd was held prone on the street during an arrest attempt.
Chauvin kept the pressure on for around nine minutes as Floyd first begged for his life and then passed out, with his pulse fading.
“He [Chauvin] killed my brother in broad daylight, it was a modern day lynching,” Philonise Floyd said.
The most serious charge Chauvin faces is second degree murder, which carries a maximum prison term of 40 years.
The Floyd family wants the second degree murder charge to stick, rather than the third degree murder and manslaughter charges with which Chauvin is also charged.
Floyd pointed out that Chauvin and three accompanying officers “were stopping people trying to stop him killing George”.
The video shows bystanders who were pleading for mercy for George Floyd being warned off.
Opening arguments due today in trial of Derek Chauvin for murder of George Floyd
Good morning, US politics live blog readers, there is a lot going on in Washington and state news – looking at you, Georgia – today and this week. And in Minneapolis, opening arguments are expected to begin this morning in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the death of George Floyd last May. We’ll have a livestream of the court proceedings and reports from the streets of the Minnesota city. So please stay tuned.
- The trial of white former police officer Chauvin, charged with the murder of Floyd, who was Black, gets underway properly today after several weeks of jury selection and legal arguments.
- It’s so much more than a criminal trial or even a police brutality trial, given that the killing of Floyd re-galvanized the Black Lives Matter movement in the US and triggered a racial reckoning in many places as protests took place around the world.
- For the first time in Minnesota legal history, the trial will be live-streamed, because access to the court room itself is severely restricted because of the coronavirus pandemic. We will have a live stream today in this blog.
- Proceedings begin at 9am local time in the Twin Cities, 10am ET/3pm GMT and after jury instructions and some legal this and that, opening arguments are expected, with the prosecution beginning.
- George Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, described on TV this morning his brother’s killing as “a modern day lynching” and predicted a murder conviction will be a “slam dunk” because of the bystander video of Chauvin kneeling on George’s neck.
- In other news, White House press secretary Jen Psaki will hold a briefing at 12.30pm today.
- The White House coronavirus team of experts and officials will hold a live briefing at 11am.
- Joe Biden warned Americans yesterday about letting their guard down against the Covid-19 pandemic, as cases creep up again. He said he expected to say more today after being briefed by his expert team, led by Anthony Fauci, at 1.30pm. The US president is due to make remarks on the vaccine distribution process shortly after.