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Jury selection underway in the Derek Chauvin trial in the death of George Floyd

Judge Peter Cahill
Posted at 5:49 AM, Mar 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-09 23:32:16-05

Jury selection is underway in the trial of a former Minneapolis police officer charged with the death of George Floyd.

The process was supposed to begin Monday but was delayed as the state supreme court reviews the possibility of re-adding a third-degree murder charge.

Derek Chauvin currently faces charges of second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in connection with Floyd’s death. He previously also faced a third-degree murder charge, which was dropped by Judge Peter Cahill last fall.

As of Tuesday evenings, three jurors have been chosen.

However, an appellate court ruled the judge "erred" in that decision and could reinstate that third-degree charge. Cahill says he does not have the power to reinstate that charge and added Monday that "unless the Court of Appeals tells me otherwise, we're going to keep moving."

State prosecutors have asked the appellate court to stop the proceedings completely until the effort to add a third-degree murder charge is resolved.

Considering the trial represents such a high-profile case, it is expected to take a few weeks to seat a jury that's deemed impartial.

Below is video showing an exchange from Tuesday morning with a potential juror illustrating the difficulty of selecting a jury.

Opening statements in the trial aren’t expected to take place until March 29.

Floyd died on May 25 while in the custody of the Minneapolis Police Department. Video taken by bystanders at the scene of Floyd’s arrest shows Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes.

The arrest video sparked months of nationwide protests against police brutality and the largest civil rights demonstrations since the 1960s.