Impartiality of juror in George Floyd homicide trial questioned

On this picture from video, former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin listens as the decision is learn in his trial. (AFP)

  • A photograph of Brandon Mitchell at an anti-racism rally sporting a t-shirt with an image of Martin Luther King Jr has surfaced.
  • Mitchell is one among solely two jurors who’ve publicly recognized themselves. 
  • He stated the picture was taken a march he attended in August 2020.

The impartiality of a juror who convicted former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin of the homicide of George Floyd has come into query after a photograph surfaced of him at an anti-racism rally.

Authorized specialists stated Chauvin’s protection lawyer might probably use the picture of juror Brandon Mitchell as grounds to enchantment the decision.

Within the picture Mitchell, a Black 31-year-old, is sporting a T-shirt with an image of civil rights chief Martin Luther King Jr on it and the phrases “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” and the letters “BLM” for Black Lives Matter.

Chauvin, who was captured on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck for greater than 9 minutes, was convicted of homicide and manslaughter final month by a 12-member jury.

Mitchell is one among solely two jurors who’ve publicly recognized themselves because the high-profile trial.

In a questionnaire, potential jurors had been requested if that they had taken half in any of the protests in opposition to police brutality which adopted Floyd’s 25 Could 2020 dying.

Mitchell stated he had not and will serve impartially. He informed the Minneapolis Star Tribune that the picture was taken at a march he attended in Washington in August 2020 to mark the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s well-known “I Have a Dream” speech.

Jeffrey Frederick, a jury choice knowledgeable, stated Mitchell’s reply could also be “technically appropriate” because the Washington occasion was billed as a commemoration.

“It will be as much as the choose to conduct questioning and to make a willpower as as to if or not he felt that this juror was biased and, probably, had lied through the course of voir dire or on the juror questionnaire,” Frederick informed AFP.

The choose would then determine whether or not it “reaches an ordinary for affecting the end result of the trial,” he stated.

“The bar is excessive by way of misconduct and the granting of a brand new trial,” he added. “Such determinations are uncommon.”

Steve Tuller, one other jury choice knowledgeable, agreed.

“Judges don’t need to declare mistrials, significantly in a case the place there was a verdict and given the particular circumstances of this case,” Tuller stated.

“In the long run, I believe it is unlikely that the juror’s ‘revelation’ will change the decision.”

Chauvin is to be sentenced on 25 June and faces as much as 40 years in jail on probably the most severe cost – second-degree homicide.

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