Justice in advance?
Or perhaps justice before Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison’s army of determined prosecutors fail in their efforts to convict former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin of murder in George Floyd’s May 25 death.
Unbelievably, before Chauvin has had his day in court, the city agreed on Friday to pay $27 million to Floyd’s family to settle a civil lawsuit filed last July, according to NBC News. Defendants in the case were the city of Minneapolis, Chauvin and the other three police officers who were involved in Floyd’s arrest.
NBC reported that “the City Council unanimously approved the settlement Friday after meeting in private. It includes a $500,000 donation to the community around the intersection of 38th and Chicago Avenue — now known as George Floyd Square — where police confronted Floyd last May 25 after a convenience store clerk claimed that he had tried to use a counterfeit $20 bill to buy cigarettes.”
As we learned recently, Floyd’s autopsy revealed that a lethal dose of fentanyl was present in his system at the time of his death. Additionally, the video that played on an endless loop following the incident that triggered widespread rioting in cities throughout the U.S. last summer, had been selectively edited. Specifically, Floyd had been uttering “I can’t breathe” while still standing and asked to be put on the ground. I posted about these circumstances here.
The Spectator’s Roger Kimball last week reported:
A look at the police bodycam footage shows that Floyd was complaining that he couldn’t breathe before he was restrained by the police. Why? Because, as the FBI’s interview with the local medical examiner on July 8, 2020 revealed, Floyd was suffering from pulmonary edema, i.e., his lungs were full of fluid. And why was that? Partly because of an underlying heart condition, partly because Floyd was full to the gills with fentanyl, a drug known to affect respiration and cause pulmonary edema.
I reported on Thursday that a Hennepin County judge had reinstated the charge of 3rd-degree murder against Chauvin. This was actually the initial charge in his case. However, following enormous public outrage, including that from the highly partisan Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, the charge was upgraded to 2nd-degree murder and a charge of 2nd-degree manslaughter was added.
Ellison issued a statement (on Thursday) which read: “The charge of 3rd-degree murder, in addition to manslaughter and felony murder, reflects the gravity of the allegations against Mr. Chauvin. We look forward to presenting all three charges to the jury.”
Jury selection is currently underway in Chauvin’s trial. And NBC reports that “seven of 12 jurors have been seated as of Friday afternoon — five men and two women.”
Will it be possible to find twelve objective jurors in the Minneapolis vicinity. I doubt it would be possible to find twelve objective jurors in the entire U.S. Lawyers will have to settle for the least biased among them.