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Chauvin trial week 1: 7 jurors selected so far, prosecutors add third-degree murder charge

Derek Chauvin sketch
Posted at 7:57 AM, Mar 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-12 16:53:13-05

Seven jurors have been selected for the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who faces several charges related to the death of George Floyd. Jury selection will continue Monday morning.

Friday’s proceedings come a day after Judge Peter Cahill restored a third-degree murder charge against Chauvin, just months after he dismissed the charge in a pre-trial hearing.

The ruling was a win for the prosecution, as it gives jurors more options to convict Chauvin. The former police officer also faces charges of second-degree murder and manslaughter.

Just two of those seven jurors thus far is a woman. Of the jurors, three are white, one is Black, one is Hispanic and the other is described as multiracial. Names of jurors will remain sealed to protect their identities.

Potential jurors have been asked if they’ve seen the video or images from Floyd’s arrest, their feelings on the situation and their feelings on police officers.

Dozens of potential jurors have already been dismissed. Prosecution and defense must agree to select 14 jurors — 12 main jurors and two alternates — before arguments can begin later this month.

Floyd died in May 2020 in the custody of the Minneapolis police. Chauvin and several others who were employed by Minneapolis police at the time responded after Floyd was accused of stealing cigarettes from a convenience store. Video taken from the scene shows Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes.

Floyd’s death sparked months-long protests against police brutality across the country and sparked conversations about racial equity and police reform.