Derek Chauvin refused to testify in the murder case for the murder of George Floyd, while the defense closed its case after only two days of testimony.
Chauvin cites his fifth amendment against self-incrimination as a victim of the chance to explain to the jury why he kept his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes and his lawyers to paint a nicer picture of the policeman. But he also avoids a one-minute interrogation of his actions and thoughts through cross-examination of the accusation.
Both sides will make final arguments on Monday, after which the case will go to the jury.
Chauvin, 45, has denied allegations of second- and third-degree murder and manslaughter over Floyd̵
The defense dropped the case after a series of witnesses disputed the prosecution’s allegations that Chauvin and two other police officers were responsible for Floyd’s death by nailing him to the ground and instead blaming the 46-year-old black man for heart disease and drug use.
On Wednesday, leading medical defense expert Dr. David Fowler also introduced the idea that the car’s carbon monoxide contributed to Floyd’s death.
And on Thursday, the judge allowed the prosecution to call one of its key witnesses, Dr. Martin Tobin, to refute Fowler’s testimony.
Tobin disputed Fowler’s claim that the level of carboxyhemoglobin in Floyd’s blood – carbon monoxide attached to a protein that displaces oxygen – was between 10% and 18%, which would contribute to heart failure.
“I don’t think it’s reliable,” Tobin said.
Tobin said the tests showed that Floyd’s blood was saturated with oxygen at 98%, leaving only 2% for “everything else.”
Last week, Tobin, a pulmonologist, told the trial that Chauvin and other officials caused Floyd’s death by cutting off his oxygen supply, causing damage to his brain and heart to stop. Tobin rejects the defense’s attempts to shift the cause of death to Floyd’s heart disease and drug use, saying he would not have died without the police and that “a healthy man subjected to what Mr Floyd was subjected to , he would die ”.
None of the charges requires the prosecution to prove that Chauvin deliberately killed Floyd.
In order to convict Chauvin of second-degree murder, which carries a sentence of up to 40 years in prison, the court must establish that the accused police officer caused Floyd’s death “while committing or attempting to commit a crime,” which means assault in the case. .
The conviction on a lesser third-degree murder charge, which carries a maximum sentence of 25 years, requires the jury to find that Chauvin committed “an act extremely dangerous to others … without respect for human life.”
The judge initially blocked the third-degree murder charge, but the prosecution appealed and won his reinstatement, as it increases the likelihood of a conviction if jurors are unable to agree that Chauvin committed the crime by kneeling on the neck of Floyd, instead of just showing disregard for his safety.
Chauvin is also facing second-degree manslaughter, which requires prosecutors only to prove that he took an “unreasonable risk” that endangered Floyd’s life. He is sentenced to 10 years in prison.
The judge told the jury that it would be sequestered as soon as the hearing began. Advising them how much to pack, he said, “plan long and hope short.”
Three other police officers involved in Floyd’s death are due to stand trial later this year on charges of aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter.