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tv   Inside Politics  CNN  April 7, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PDT

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hello, everybody. welcome to our viewers in the united states and around the world. i am john king in washington. day eight of witness testimony in the trial of the former minneapolis police officer, derek chauvin. he pinned george floyd with his knee on his neck, a big focus.
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on the stand, sergeant jody stiger, and he has been unequivocal. he said the crowd size did not add to the threat level. he said the officer should have known the amount of strength of use he was using put floyd at risk of dying. >> do you have an opinion to a degree of reasonable and professional certainty how much force was reasonable for the defendant to use on mr. floyd after mr. floyd was handcuffed and placed in the prone position and not resisting? >> yes. >> what is that opinion? >> my opinion is that no force should have been used once he was in that position. >> trial to resume any moment now, and with us is laura coates
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and former d.c. police chief, chief charles ramsey. laura, let me start with you. this is always a tough call for the prosecution. how many witnesses do you bring and how many outside experts do you try to bring to back up your testimony? your take so far on the effectiveness or lack there of when it comes to sergeant stiger. >> you don't want the jurors thinking this is all an inside job, some sort of coming together because they are trying to antagonize for personal reasons, and we are talking about the best practices and what was known to officers in a place like minneapolis would be universally known in other places as well, and what we are seeing here, john, is the use of force continuum, this graduated use of force over time but we are seeing clear lines in the sand, nobody is disputing an officer can use reasonable force to try and retrain a suspect
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resisting. there's a clear line in the sand when it goes from reasonable force to excessive force to kr criminal force. other officers are saying it was not reasonable and it was excessive and went on to assault. >> as you listen to the defense council, mr. nelson, he keeps using the term reasonable officer, and he was trying to say maybe officer chauvin made the wrong call, but maybe he had the experience that i have to make a tough call. listen to the defense questioning of the prosecution witness saying these things sometimes are unpredictable. >> a person in handcuffs can continue to be a threat, agreed? >> yes. >> they can kick you? >> correct. >> they can bite you? >> correct. >> they can thrash and get free and start running, right? >> in certain instances, yes.
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>> in certain instances, they can even get your weapon, right? >> yes. >> they can get your gun from you even though they are handcuffed? >> yes. >> this is part of the fascinating give and take that you get in a trial like this, chief. has the defense council, in your view, been effective? he needs to only to win over one juror, and he needs to get a jury to say it's a tough call. >> i don't think he has been effective. he's laid out a bunch of things but none of that happen so they had control of george floyd. he didn't do that, number one, and they were in a position where they could have stopped it immediately had he tried to do anything. you have four officers on the scene and you have one person prone position in handcuffs. i mean, you know, listen, he's doing the best he can with what he has to work with, talking about the defense, but he's got
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a huge hurdle to overcome and that video is pretty powerful and he's trying to set up the notion that it was the drugs that killed him and not the use of force that killed him and ultimately i think that's where he's going to put most of his eggs in that particular basket when all is said and done because i think the use of force issue is a losing battle in terms of trying to convince a jury that that was appropriate. >> laura, we talked about this with previous witnesses and again today, the prosecution, number one, anticipates the defense's argument and now we have been through a week plus of testimony and he's saying put yourself in the officer's shoes, and there was a struggle beforehand and the crowd was unruly, and he said you watched the videos and you see the people, yes, there are bystanders and some of them are yelling and should it have impacted the situation. listen. >> when you reviewed the body worn cameras did you see anybody throw any rocks or bottles? >> no, i did not. >> did you see anybody
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physically attack the officers? >> no, i did not. >> did you hear foul language or name calling? >> there was name calling, yes, but -- and some foul language, but that was about the most of it. >> did that factor into your analysis? >> no. >> why not? >> because i did not perceive them as being a threat. >> this is the prosecution, laura, painstakingly trying to undermine every argument mr. nelson is trying to make on the defense. >> here was an effective moment to do so and we have all seen the footage from different vantage points of what this crowd was doing, and they were not trying to attack george floyd, they were trying to encourage the officers, they were begging the officers to render aid, which, of course, they already owe him a duty of care because he was in their custody. this was not in the middle of the street in the phemiddle of parade where all these people are coming around and making it impossible for them to act, and
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the emts were able to come and were aware of the crowd and they were able to perform their duty of care and perform even when the officers failed to do so. and this is about the notion of a split-second decision here, and the defense raised questions about split-second decisions, and this was nine minutes and 29 seconds of time and not a split second among them. we're talking about the action to act or not act over a period of time for 529 seconds. how you overcome that reality is beyond me. >> chief, laura raises an important point there, the value of the prosecution hopes in bringing in the outside witness, and yes, they are trying to use
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sergeant stiger -- sorry, the trial is resuming. let's take you back into the courtroom in minneapolis. >> sergeant stiger, where we left off we were talking about how bystanders began to congregate around the event, yes? >> i believe so yes. >> and you would agree that over the course of time the bystanders -- some of the bystanders who were observing the event became more excited? >> more concerned, i would phrase it. >> voices grew louder? >> yes. >> they began using -- they began name calling, essentially? >> correct. >> as that increased, or as the time went on the intensity of the crowd increased? >> yes, they became more concerned. >> now we looked at -- i want to
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talk about exhibit 110, if we could publish 110. this, again, being what some people would call the use of force continuum or what the minneapolis police department calls the defense response training guide. >> yes. >> this is a graphic illustration in terms and based on the subject's behavior, how much force is authorized? >> corrected. >> the onus or focus being on the suspect's behavior initially, correct? >> correct. >> and the response to that behavior, right? >> correct. >> now, again, we all look at a use of force in a vacuum, right?
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>> no. >> we don't look at it in a singular flames, right? >> correct. >> we look at the totality of the circumstances, right? >> yes. >> and an officer, a reasonable officer, would take into consideration what has happened with the suspect a few minutes ago, correct? >> correct. >> and try to use that information to inform what could potentially happen in the future, agreed? >> agreed. >> that's what reasonable officers do? >> yes. >> so if i am a police officer, and i near my two partners just two minutes ago were fighting with somebody, right, and our efforts became futile, right, that's going to affect how we perceive what might happen in the future with that -- what we perceive might happen in the
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future with that person? >> it's something to be concerned about. >> correct. because in fact often times people who become compliant after a struggle start to struggle again, right? >> in certain instances, yes. >> it happens, right? >> yes, it does. >> somebody who can catch their wind again and start fighting again, right? >> in certain instances, yes, but in most cases officers are trained you can only go by what the suspect's actions are at the time, you cannot say i thought he or she was going to do this, so i was going to use this force so it's based on their actions. >> an officer's use of force can exceed the suspect's use of force, correct? >> yes. >> that's how it is designed, right? >> it's proportional. >> if i call you a name and i am a -- if i call you a name and
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you are a police officer, you can't pull your gun out and shoot me, right? >> correct. >> that would be a disproportionate use of force to the threat that i -- >> perceive, yes. >> and so the mere fact that force is being applied, it's not second by second, we have to look at it in longer context, right? >> right, to your constantly reassessing during that timeframe. >> constantly reassessing. i presume you have been through firearms training? >> yes. >> and i presume you have had situations where you and your firearms training are confronted with multiple threats, right? >> yes. >> and your training teaches you to deal with the most active threat, right? >> correct. or the closest threat. >> the closest threat or the biggest threat, correct? >> yes. >> so you want to neutralize or
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contend with that potential threat before you deal with the lesser threats? >> yes. >> and again, in the cycle, the critical decision making model, that's coming both with what you are doing with the suspect, that critical decision making model is occurring? >> yes. >> it's observing what is around you? >> your environment, yes. >> it's dealing with other people that may be there, right? >> yes. >> and it's dealing with using that same model to take all of your training and experience and things of that nature, too? >> correct. >> so there's literally hundreds if not thousands of decisions being made every nano second, no? >> in certain instances, yes. >> simply because a person is not fighting with you, right, if i am not fighting with you, that doesn't mean you still can't use
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some sort of force to control me, right? >> it depends on the circumstance. >> according to the minneapolis police department if somebody is passively resisting you, it means they are not fighting with you? >> correct. >> force can still be used, right? >> yes, in certain instances. again, depending on the suspect's actions. >> again, including drug manipulation, pressure points, just a restraint, correct? >> a lot of that depends on what the police response should be at that time, if it's where the officer has decided that this person needs to go to jail, you know, take him into custody, those would come into play. if it's more of a can we talk to you or detaining them, it may just be verbalization, so depends on the circumstances. >> if we want to protect that
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person and we know ems is on its way, we can continue to restrain that person for ems if they have a medical need for ems, right? >> it depends on the circumstance. >> ultimately it's depending on the reasonable officer analysis, right? >> yes, and what is directed from that specific agency, what their expectations are of the officer's performance as well as best practices as well, those are taken into consideration. >> and it's the specific facts of the specific case, agreed, what the officer is seeing at the scene, right? >> when we are talking about force, correct. >> all right. again, you have had an opportunity to review a lot of the minneapolis police department's training materials? >> yes, sir. >> some of which you found useful and some of which you didn't, right?
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>> yes. >> would it be fair to say that your review of those materials were more focused on defensive tactics, use of force training and policies and things of that nature? >> correct. >> so you -- i am presuming that the more recent materials would be more illustrative in informing your opinion, right? >> yes. >> and you have seen the workforce detector list of the programs officer chauvin took? >> yes. >> you are familiar officer chauvin according to the records took phase one defensive tactics in march of 2020? >> i believe so. >> did you review phase one defensive tactics material from 2020? >> i believe so.
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>> could we take this down, your honor. >> i am just showing the witness -- can you see what is in front of you, sir? >> yes. >> would you agree this appears to be the training materials for the 2020 in service phase one that would have been seen by officer chauvin? >> yes. >> if we just look at the presentation, this is a presentation that largely deals with demonstrations, protests, crowd control, right? >> yes. >> large crowds, small crowds, things of that nature, right? >> yes. >> this would have been training that mr. chauvin had roughly a month or two before this
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instant, right? >> correct. >> does this appear to be a true and accurate copy of what you would have reviewed? >> yes. >> i have previously marked this as exhibit 1032 and i would move for its submission. >> just the single slide, counsel? >> the entire program. >> any objection? >> yes, your honor. i need the date. >> the date is 20-7-1, it's a large crowd manual.
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>> your objection continues? >> it does, your honor. could we just have one moment? >> yeah. >> no objection. >> sorry, no objection? >> no objection. >> okay, the exhibit is admitted. >> i am showing you what is slide 39 of this, and i ask permission to publish. this is the minneapolis police department training materials on dealing with crowds, right? >> with large crowds. >> large crowds, crowds that officers are trained that crowds are dynamic creatures and can
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change rapidly, right? >> yes. >> you would agree with that? >> in this particular training for large crowds, correct. but even if small crowds, if you have ten or 12 people, crowds are dynamic creatures, right? >> in certain instances, yes. >> they can change very suddenly, right? >> yes. >> just a second, your honor. i agree that this deals with larger crowds and larger protests? >> yes, the training is for use of force, yes, i am familiar with it. >> officers are experiencing this training, right? >> yes. >> and they are taught never to underestimate a crowd's potential, right? >> correct. >> again, crowds being unique to the particular circumstances of a particular case, right?
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>> correct. >> so ultimately when an officer is on scene and he's making a decision to use force and the crowd assembles, whether they are peaceful or not peaceful, a reasonable officer has tpo be aware of what they are doing, right? >> absolutely. >> that can distract an officer? >> in certain instances, yes. >> and as people start trying to communicate to the officers, that can -- if if it's just peaceful, hey, officer, hey sergeant stiger, let's talk. let's distracting that officer from what he or she is doing, right? >> yes. it can. >> it can. and an officer has to be prepared for the unexpected, a reasonable officer does, right? >> yes, they are always mitigating the risks. >> i understand that part of what an officer has to do is
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assess the words somebody may be saying and comparing it to the tone of how they are saying it, right? >> yes. >> that's what a reasonable officer does, right? >> yes. >> if i say, hello, sergeant stiger versus hello sergeant stiger, there's two different tones and my tone can convey meaning? >> yes. >> if i start calling you names, that conveys a meaning, right? >> yes. >> and saying things like you're a [ bleep ], that conveys a particular intent, agreed? >> a reasonable officer, if they could perceive that as a threat? >> name calling? i would say it depends on the officer's training and
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experience. >> okay. but an officer, a reasonable officer could perceive words that people are saying and the tone that is it being said in as a threat or a risk to the officer's safety, agreed? >> a risk possibly, but officers are typically trained that when it comes to verbal threats in and of themselves that you can't just use that only to justify force. >> you had, again, an opportunity to review minneapolis police department's training materials, if we could pick this up. can you see what is in front of you, sir? >> yes. >> you reviewed, i presume, as part of your analysis the minneapolis police department's crisis intervention technique training, correct? >> yes. >> i am not seeking to admit
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this, but officers are trained to look at potential signs of aggression, right? >> yes. >> the minneapolis police department trains its police officers how to potentially perceive an aggressive behavior of a person? >> correct. >> that includes raising voices, right? >> yes. >> that includes people tensing muscles, right? >> yes. >> exaggerated gestures? >> yes. >> pacing, right, that could be a sign of an aggressive behavior? >> yes. typically those are when you are dealing with one-on-one with a specific subject or engaged in a specific officer, and when the training is given, it's for dealing with one-on-one. >> that's the training. but in terms of you are an
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officer and you are engaged with asuspect, right, and somebody is now pacing around and watching you and watching you and calling you names and saying you are a [ exphreustive ] that could be viewed as a threat. >> correct. >> officers are specifically trained to try and predict future behavior based on that, correct? >> correct. to prepare themselves. >> when somebody starts to threaten you, it's a possible possibility that an officer can view that as a potential deadly assault is about to happen, that's what they are trained? >> yes. that's what they are trained. it's a person's likely behav
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>> did you listen to every single thing the crowd or people were saying? >> i attempted to, yes. some you can't make out, but, yes, for the most part, yes. >> you would agree that if somebody were to say if you touch me like that i'm going to -- i would like to slap the. [ expletive ] out of you, that's known as a threat, correct? >> yes. >> reasonable police officers need to have a higher level of awareness of a situation, don't they?
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>> yes. and a reasonable police officer, you would want a reasonable police officer to be more situationally aware of everything that is happening around him or her than an average bystander, right? >> yes. usually that comes with training, experience and tenure. >> now, there were some questions about the actual force that was applied in this case, and it's your professional opinion, is it not, that this appears to be -- have officer chauvin's knee on the neck of mr. floyd, right? >> yes. >> and that you concluded that was a deadly use of force, right? >> yes, based on mr. floyd's action, or lack of action. >> so in that context, you believe, a, he was on the neck
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and applying pressure to the carotid artery? >> not necessarily on the carotid artery, but it was on the neck and on the back. >> you are trained in ground defense as an officer, correct? >> yes. >> and ground defense includes the prone restraint technique, right? >> yes. there are different terms, right. >> what would you call it? >> the prone restraint technique. >> control of a person. >> you heard the phrase -- >> let's not talk over each other. wait for the question. >> yes, sir. >> you heard the phrase, control the head, control the body? >> yes. >> that's commonly what police officers are trained, right? >> yes, when it comes to
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handcuffing, correct. >> and in ground defense, right? >> yes. >> in the context of ground defense or in handcuffing or continuing to restrain a police officer -- or a suspect, control the head, control the body, right? >> yes, when they are resisting. >> these concepts are widely accepted throughout law enforcement in the united states? >> yes. >> so again, in the training materials you have reviewed you can see there are photographes f officers applying a knee to the head, right? >> i did not see officer apply agony to the head, no? >> >> sometimes to the neck? >> yes. >> and the specific technique you are trained on, is to put the knee in between the shoulder blades at the base of the neck. >> yes, the base of the neck.
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>> that's standard protocol, standard police practice and basically in every single department that you are familiar with? >> that i am familiar -- yes. >> you were trained that way? >> yes. >> there's the handcuffing, correct? >> correct. >> and then there is the need to control the suspect, correct, if they are resisting? >> yes. >> and then there's simply holding somebody or restraining them to decide what your next steps are going to be, right? >> yes, and in most cases, however, especially in the last 20 years, officers that are trained is once you handcuff the person even if they are still resisting, you want to put them on their side or sit them up?
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>> even in resisting? >> yes. >> it's a hobble. >> you would agree that the minneapolis police department are trained that when a person is handcuffed and then rendered unconscious that officers need to use caution in unhandcuffing them to revive them? >> not aware of that, no. >> you as part of your analysis review any materials regarding the lateral neck restraint? >> yes. >> just looking in front of you, did you look at this training material? >> yes.
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>> officers are trained that if cpr is needed, you use handcuffs first, correct? >> yes. >> and to use caution because the subject could revive and be combative? >> yes. >> they passed out and then came to. >> and then they fought you more? >> yes. >> looking at what is already in evidence of the 2019 use of force manual, at slide 41, this is what we are talking about in
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terms of the prone arm control, right? >> yes. >> you see a photograph here, an officer's knee appears to be a cross the shoulder blades and the head and neck area of the person, right? >> yes, as he is attempting to handcuff -- >> your honor, not an objection, but just -- >> i have it listed as 1031. that's what i have it at. i don't remember what you have -- >> it's the 2019 use of force manual -- >> sorry. >> i am referring to date stamp 2-14 -- >> sorry. >> could we just take a brief pause? sorry, your honor.
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>> a quick pause in the trial here that the prosecutor is just wanting a point of reference to find the document, and he's using a minneapolis police department document on use of force. we will bring in our analysts, laura coates. it may not be a long conversation here, but you see the attorneys just comparing notes in the courtroom, they have thousands and thousands of exhibits and receipts and are just making sure they are on the same page with the documents. let's see if laura and chief ramsey is with us -- my aapologies to both. we're getting back to the trial. >> again, you see here this officer's knee appears to be over the neck and head of the subject as he's attempting to handcuff him, correct?
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>> correct. >> so there are circumstances when the knee is put in this position, correct? >> yes. >> the officers are always cautioned to stay away from the neck as much as possible. >> all right. take that down, here. now, you were shown a series of photographs, and i don't have a copy of that right now, and i believe it was exhibit 274, the one you admitted. >> 254? >> there was one photo -- would it be possible to publish that?
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>> the photo, if we could publish this exhibit in this upper right-hand corner, right? >> yes. >> mr. chauvin, the right shoulder is down lower, right, than the left shoulder? >> yes. >> that would be consistent with more of his weight being on his right side, correct? >> yes. >> you can take that down. again, when we look at still photographs, what we miss is sort of the dynamics of what is happening, right? >> yes. >> so weight can be shifting from side to side at times? >> correct. >> and if an officer is generally speaking on his toes, a majority of the weight is going to be in the feet, right, that's what you are trained?
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>> yes, that's how officers are trained. >> so if his foot is off to the side, he has less weight on that side of the body because his foot is off to the side, right? >> yes. >> and his right foot, the toes are tucked under, and that would be consistent with having a majority of the weight on the right side, right? >> yes. >> again, in uses of force that you use the yourself or in uses of force that you have reviewed, right, often times, these things, uses of force leave injuries on a suspect, right? >> yes. if the weight of a human being was placed in a particular area, based on your training and experience and reviewing police
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uses of force, you would expect there to be injury where the majority of the weight existed, correct? >> objection, your honor, lack of foundation and beyond the scope. >> overruled. you may answer. >> not necessarily, no. >> obviously, medical doctors would be able to answer that better, correct? >> yes. >> the minneapolis police department authorized the use of neck restraints, correct? >> yes. >> and the neck restraint is not considered a lethal use of force? >> correct.
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>> so i would like to show you a series of photographs that were introduced yesterday starting with exhibit 1045. so before we go there, you would agree that some of the problems with photographs are that, again, it doesn't capture -- a single photograph is not going to capture the dynamics of what is happening, right? >> in some cases, yes. >> weight can shift in a video verses a still photograph, right? >> yes. >> and positions can change, ri right? >> yes. >> those things can happen throughout the time in the use of force, right? >> yes. >> i would like to show you and
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publish exhibit 1045. i don't know if have you seen these, but these are stills from the body worn camera. it's a little difficult to see through the glare here but maybe you can see it better on your screen. >> could i stand. >> feel free. >> thank you, sir. >> in this area it appears you can see officer chauvin's left leg. >> yes. >> and that officer chauvin's shin appears to be parallel to or over mr. floyd's left shoulder blade, agree? >> it's hard to tell. it could be his neck or shoulder blade. >> and this dip right in here, the area between the two shoulder blades, he's handcuffed, right?
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that causes the shoulders to sort of come back. >> sorry, you are referring to his left knee, correct? is that what you stated, his left knee? >> right. >> yes, his left knee appears to be, based on the photograph i am looking at, near the neck area of mr. floyd. >> in between the shoulder blade here and what would be the shoulder blade behind his hand? >> above it. i would not say it's in between it, and it appears to be more above the shoulder blades than -- >> almost resting on the shoulder blades? >> above. >> you would say above? >> yes. >> and it appears to be angled towards the cruiser, correct? >> yes. >> i am showing you -- oops. i will show that again, that bei being 3322, right?
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>> yes. >> again, can you see mr. floyd's shoulder blade here a little more pronounced? >> yes. >> it appears to be above the shoulder blade, correct? >> yes. >> mr. chauvin's -- excuse me, mr. floyd's -- mr. chauvin's calf appears to be towards the shoulder blade? >> yes. >> and angled in towards the squad car, correct? >> slightly, yes. >> and then 1047. this is now at 20:27, and there's a different angle, now. >> yes. >> and you can get a better view of the placement of mr. chauvin's knee? >> yes. >> here again you have the shoulder blade, and mr. chauvin's knee is sort of at the
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base of the neck, correct tphao y . >> yes, i would agree. >> and then looking at exhibit 1048. can you see mr. floyd's head in this picture, correct t? >> yes. >> it gives you the depth perception of the knee on mr. floyd's neck? >> somewhat, yes. >> if we could take this down, your honor. i would like to show you what has been introduced into evidence as exhibit 1020. on the left-hand side of your screen, that appears to be the bystander video?
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>> yes. >> on the right-hand side that's from mr. king's body worn camera? >> yes. >> you would agree at this point based on everything that we have seen in the same photographers on the left-hand side, it appears mr. chauvin's knee is on mr. floyd's neck? >> yes. more on the base of the neck. >> from officer king's body-worn camera, it appears it was more at the base of the neck in between the shoulder blades, right tphao yes.
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>> in fact, as you review some of the videos where mr. floyd was on -- in the prone position, there are points in time at which mr. floyd picks up his head and moves it, agreed? >> he attempted to early on, yes. he was saying he couldn't breathe, so i assumed he was attempting to try and breathe better. >> but he was able to lift up his head at some points? >> correct. slightly, yes. >> i have no further questions, your honor. >> redirect? >> thank you, your honor. sir, to clarify a little bit --
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thank you. to clarify a little bit on the known risks that you testified to with respect to positional affixa. >> yes. >> is the pressure related to the pressure on the neck or body? >> any additional pressure on the body complicates breathing more so than if there was no pressure at all. >> so the placement of the knees, even if they are shifting on the neck or base of the neck, the point is both of the defendant's knees were on mr. floyd's body during the entirety of the restraint period, is that correct? >> yes. >> i want to ask you some questions about what may have been apparent to the defendant when he first got on the scene.
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you were asked questions about being dispatched and you know that the term code 4, correct? >> correct. >> you were aware that prior to the defendant arriving on the scene that officer layne had called code 4? >> yes. i saw that in reviewing some of the documentation. >> what does that mean? >> that means everything is okay, we have the suspect in custody. >> so at the time the defendant arrived he would have been aware based on the totality that code 4 had been called t? >> yes. >> i want to direct your attention to the moment in time where he would have arrived. you can pull exhibit 43, which is for the record officer layne's body worn camera, and i
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would like you to begin explaining at time stamp 20:17:20. i'm sorry. i can't hear you. hold on. it's 47? i apologize. it's 47. >> you can leave it. so the time stamp is 20:17:20. at this point in time we see
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officer thao and who is next to him, the defendant, arrive, right? >> yeah, you can see the shoulder in that circle. >> i would ask that we publish that to the jury. >> i'm not trying to win. i'm not trying to win. i will get -- he know it. >> i'm claustrophobic. yes, i'm claustrophobic. >> i am going to pull -- >> can i get in the front? >> no, you are not getting in the front. >> okay, i'm not a bad guy, man. i'm not a bad guy! oh, man.
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>> you know -- you can take that down. sir, in assessing an individual in the totality of the circumstances that would have been apparent at the scene, were you able to detect any indication that mr. floyd was under some sort of distress? >> based on his comments and based on his actions, yes, it was a possibility. >> is that something that would have apparently officer chauvin, the defendant, would have seen that, is that correct? >> yes. >> would a reasonable officer have taken that into account? >> yes. >> sir, you testified that the -- that the force that was used during the restraint period by the defendant was, in fact, excessive, is that right? >> yes. >> you were asked on cross to
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distinguish between the standard -- or to comment on the standard of generally reasonable force, and is it your opinion to a degree of professional certainty that the force applied by the defendant in the restraint period was objectively reas reasonable or not objectively reason blgable? >> not objectively reasonable. >> and you were asked about different techniques for de-escalation, and the telling of somebody to relax. i would like you to comment on the context in which mr. floyd was asked to relax by the defendant. >> it appears in the video that he was told to relax as he was stating that he was in medical distress, he couldn't breathe and that he was in pain. >> so again, the context, the
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words of the defendant versus the actions, telling somebody to relax when you are sitting on top of them, is that an effective de-escalation technique in your opinion? >> objection. >> overruled. >> not necessarily. >> as to an officer, a reasonable officer reassessing and re-evaluating the situation, they also have to take in information related to a subject's potential medical condition, is that right? >> yes. >> would you agree with the statement in your custody, in your care? >> yes. >> what does that mean? >> that means once you take somebody into custody you are responsible for their care. >> can you, as an officer opt not to believe them? >> no. >> you have to consider the context, correct?
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>> correct. >> i cut you off. could you repeat that. sorry, your honor. >> you are obligated to. >> in the context here in which mr. floyd was manifesting some distress, did you believe the defendant had an obligation or take that into consideration when considering to continue the type of force he was applying? >> absolutely. as the time went on, clearly in the video you could see that mr. floyd's medical -- his health was deteriorating. his breath was getting lower and his tone of voice was getting lower and his movements were starting to cease, so as the officer on scene, you have to see that something is not right and something has changed
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drastically to what was occurring earlier so you have a responsibility to take some type of action. >> so the training materials included photographs of officers in positions where they would have their legs on a subject's back and base of the neck, r right? >> yes. >> and in the photograph, the subject was not yet handcuffed, correct? >> no, he was not. >> and the purpose of situating one's self on somebody is to gain control to handcuff a subject? >> yes. >> and what would they do after that? >> sit them up. >> you were asked to comment on sort of the notion that some things that law enforcement do, have to do, uses of force are
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not attractive to the public, is that right? >> correct. >> in fact, you were asked about a presentation that you had given relative to that called awful but lawful? >> yes. >> to be lawful, the force must be objectionably reasonable? >> yes. >> and if it's not lawful, what is left? >> the premise of the presentation was that in certain situations based on a policy or a particular law, even though the situation may be deemed lawful in the community's eyes, the use of force is awful. so it was stating that, hey, in these situations you can have a situation where by law it looks
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horrible to the common eye, but based on the state law it is lawful. >> but if it's not objectively reasonable or lawful, then it's just awful? >> correct. >> nothing further. >> any re-cross? >> you were not personally there that day, correct? >> the day of the incident? >> correct. correct. >> you may not have known how people were feeling, correct? >> correct. >> you may not have known how they felt in terms of their perception, correct? >> correct. >> you may not have known how mr. floyd's body felt?
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>> only what he was verbalizing. >> i am talking about the tension or stiffness of his body? >> correct. >> again, in terms of your use of force reviews in the past, you said you are a peer reviewer. how many reviewers look at the incident in terms of the use of force? >> from start to finish? numerous. the los angeles police department, it starts with the sergeant doing the investigation, and from there it will go to the watch commander who has a lieutenant or another sergeant and the training coordinator, and then they make recommendations and they send it to the captains of the division, and at that point the captains would send it to the bureau and that's where i was at at one point as well, and then the bureau makes recommendations and
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it gets sent up to another unit and they make the final recommendation in that. in regards to more serious cases where i was a peer member, it goes from the investigators to the use of force review board, which is a board where command staff appear. >> in that peer review board, they make recommendations to move up the chain, right? >> yes, they make recommendations -- sorry. >> go ahead. >> they make recommendations to the chief of police and he makes recommendations to the commission, and then the inspectors office review it as well and make recommendations and in most cases they concur with the chief and in some cases they disagree and then finally a presentation is made to the police commission and the police commission at that point makes a final decision. >> so there are layers of review? >> correct. >> and ultimately in terms of
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that five-member review pwoboar the one you were describing? >> right. >> are those decisions always unanimous as to whether or not it was a reasonable use of force? >> no, it's not. >> and sometimes those five people, they may disagree with each other, right? >> yes. >> we have something we call a minority report, and i have written a couple of those myself, yes. if one person or a number of people on the board disagree, then the ones that disagree, the minority have to do a report basically telling what their case is and why they disagree. >> right. so even within that process there are five potential police officers who can disagree with each other? >> correct. >> i have no further questions. >> thank you, sergeant. we appreciate your time. you are excused. >> thank you. >> your honor, we have one more
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witness. >> your honor, the state would call special agent to the stand. >> i do. >> take a seat, please. >> if you feel comfortable doing so take off your mask. we'll start with you giving your full name and spelling. >> james, reyerson. >> thank you, your honor. >> can you tell us what your current occupation is? >> currently


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