Death Of George Floyd: Key Witness Refuses To Testify At Trial

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Morries Hall, who was in the car with George Floyd before the police intervened, and who had sold him drugs in the past, asked not to testify at the trial. This key witness, who is currently in prison for other facts, appeared Tuesday, April 6 before Judge Peter Cahill, who is presiding over the trial of white police officer Derek Chauvin, and asked for the right not to respond to his summons. “There is really only a very small subject that could be addressed” without violating his rights, agreed the magistrate, who will render a final decision later.

Derek Chauvin, 45, is accused of killing George Floyd on May 25 in Minneapolis by keeping his knee on his neck for more than nine minutes, a drama that has sparked historic anti-racism in the United States. He pleads not guilty and ensures that the black forty-something died of an overdose.

At the start of the trial, his lawyer argued that George Floyd, in a car with Morries Hall and another friend, had swallowed two pills just before the police arrived. However, George Floyd’s girlfriend testified last week that Morries Hall had sold the couple drugs in the past. Me Eric Nelson, who defends the police officer, confirmed Tuesday that he would have liked to ask Morries Hall if he had “supplied or sold prohibited substances” to George Floyd just before his death.

Morries Hall is afraid of lawsuits against him

Morries Hall’s lawyer, however, felt that this would expose her client to prosecution if the overdose thesis was ultimately upheld, and invoked the 5th Amendment to the US Constitution which allows you not to testify against yourself. The judge ruled in his favor and ruled that if Morries Hall was called to jury duty, he could only be questioned about George Floyd’s attitude before his death, and nothing else. Before giving the green light on this point, he asked Eric Nelson to clarify his questions in writing.

After this procedural debate, the trial resumed with the hearing of several police officers responsible for training officers in Minneapolis. “They are taught to stay away from the neck as much as possible,” said Johnny Mercil, who coordinates training in the use of force. A Los Angeles police officer, Jody Stiger, who conducted more than 2,500 assessments on the use of force by colleagues, was also summoned by the prosecution. “In my opinion, the force used was excessive” in the Floyd case, he asserted.

The day before, the city’s police chief, Medaria Arradondo, had already considered that Derek Chauvin had “violated the rules” and “the values” in force in his services, by keeping his knee so long on the neck of the Afro-American. The prosecution plans to summon another expert on police practices before starting, probably Wednesday, the medical debate on the causes of the death of George Floyd. Discussions are expected to continue for about two more weeks. The verdict of the jurors in this extraordinary trial is not expected before the end of April.


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