Jury Seated in Derek Chauvin Murder Trial in the Killing of George Floyd as Testimony Scheduled to Begin
A multi-race jury has been selected in Derek Chauvin's murder trial as city braces for highly controversial case.
A panel of 12 jurors and three alternates has been seated in the murder trial of white former cop Derek Chauvin, who is accused of killing Black resident George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for nearly nine minutes.
Testimony is scheduled to begin on Monday in the highly anticipated trial that got underway earlier this month under extraordinary security measures.
Floyd's death last year sparked outrage across the country as Black Lives Matter protesters, and others, took to the streets to protest his killing.
Jury selection wrapped up Tuesday after two weeks of interrogation and the dismissal of two previously accepted panelists. The jurors were dismissed after the court determined they could not be impartial after Minneapolis announced the city would pay a record-setting $27 million settlement in a civil suit filed by Floyd's family.
The panel consists of six white women, three white men, three Black men, one Black woman and two multi-race women. Though the jurors will remain anonymous and will not be seen during the live-streamed proceedings, here is what is known about them from the selection process, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
During the trial, the panelists will be referred to by numbers assigned to them by the court.
A white man in his 20s who is a chemist. "I consider myself a pretty logical person … I rely on facts and logic and what's in front of me," he said. He has not seen bystander video of Floyd's death, he said.
A multi-race woman in her 20s who said she was "super excited" to perform her civic duty. "It's a very important case, not just for Hennepin County … but nationwide," she said. Her uncle is a police officer, she said.
A white man in his 30s who works as an auditor and said he has seen portions of the social-media videos chronicling Floyd's detention and death by police. He acknowledged he has a somewhat negative view of Chauvin because "someone died, and that's obviously not a positive thing." But he said he could remain neutral in evaluating evidence "from a viewpoint of the law."
A Black man in his 30s who emigrated to the United States 14 years ago. He said being summoned as a possible juror made him feel "surprised and anxious," but said he will be impartial and considers being on the panel "a service to my community and our country."
A white woman in her 50s who is a single mother and works as an executive in the health care industry. The bystander videos gave her a somewhat negative view of Chauvin, she said. "A man died, and I am not sure that's procedure. Not all police are bad, but the bad-behavior police need to go."
A Black man in his 30s who said he had seen the bystander videos and would remain objective. "I don't think (Chauvin) had any intention of harming anybody, but somebody did die," he said.
A white woman in her 50s who works as an executive assistant in the heath care business. She wrote in her questionnaire that she had seen bystander video, but "I couldn't watch it in full, because it was too disturbing to me." Nonetheless, she said she would be impartial. "I'm not in a position to change the law. I'm in a position to uphold the law. He's innocent until we can prove otherwise."
A Black man in his 40s who said minorities are often arrested, but he doesn't agree with the movement to "defund" law enforcement departments. "The police do a lot," he said. "I would trust the police."
A multi-race woman in her 40s who works as a personnel consultant and considers herself a hockey mom. She said the civil settlement in the Floyd case did not affect her judgment. "I don't think that declares guilt one way or the other," she said.
A white woman in her 50s who is a nurse. She has seen the viral video , she said, but would remain impartial. Her medical training will impact how she reviewed evidence, she said. "We all use our life experiences to make judgments," she said.
A Black woman in her 60s who is a grandmother and a retired marketing professional. She said she viewed part of Floyd's arrest video but turned away after a few minutes. "It just wasn't something that I needed to see," she said. She said she had no opinion about Chauvin or Floyd.
A white woman in her 40s who works in the insurance business. In her questionnaire, she wrote that Floyd did not deserve to die, but he was not completely innocent. She is generally supportive of police, she said, but thinks "people of other races get treated unfairly" by law enforcement.
A white woman in her 50s who has worked in customer service and is an animal lover, she said. She wrote in her questionnaire that she had seen the viral video. "This restraint was ultimately responsible for Mr. Floyd's demise," she said. She also pledged to consider Chauvin innocent until proven guilty.
A white woman in her 20s who described herself as a newlywed and a social worker. Her training enables her to be empathetic and to keep an open mind, she said.
A white man in his 20s who is an accountant. His analytical training will allow him to impartially weigh evidence, he said. "I have a great sense of pride in being a United States citizen," he said, and is generally favorable of the Black Lives Matter movement.
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