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tv   2020  ABC  April 23, 2021 9:01pm-11:01pm PDT

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♪ i used to call him big g. i used to call him floyd. >> i called him georgie. >> he's known as perry from the q, georgie babe, floyd, big floyd, and gentle giant. >> you guys call him george, but i call him floyd, and my brother was very lovable. >> georgie. i mean, you can't even say his name without smiling. he was a protector. he was always uplifting, encouraging. he always had something positive to say. >> he would gifl give you the
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shirt off his back, man. just life of the party all the time, cracking jokes. just a good guy, man. >> i went through some things, man, and had to bounce back up, man. i'm just sharing right now. one thing about old floyd, man, i love the world. >> he was born in fayetteville. moved to houston with his mom. >> ms. sissy was georgie's mom, and she loved him so much, and he loved her. >> he loved his family. he loved the people that he connected with. >> a lot of people don't realize this, but george floyd was a father and a loving dad. >> he was kind, and he was nice to my mama all the time. me and my mama both loved him. >> my name is waynel sexton, and i was george floyd's second grade teacher at frederick douglass elementary in houston, texas.
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george was always perry to his classmates and to me, and he was a good student. each child wrote an essay on "what i want to be when i grow up." and perry's essay is very nice. "when i grow up, i want to be a supreme court judge. when people say, your honor he did rob the bank, i will say, be seated! >> he always had dreams of being big, doing something that had a huge impact. he made this statement that just stuck out with me, he said, man, i'm going to be big. i'm going to touch the world. >> what's his name? >> george floyd! >> what's his name? >> george floyd! >> what's his name? >> george floyd! >> what's his name? >> george floyd!
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>> cup foods on 3759 chicago. on 38th. they are reporting there's a person who used a counterfeit bill at the business. >> on memorial day, may 25, 2020, floyd was hanging out with a couple of his friends, and he drove them to cup foods, which is a local neighborhood corner grocery store. >> george floyd was a regular customer. maybe once or twice a week, and never had an issue with him. quite pleasant person. >> he's happy. he's dancing around a little bit. the store clerk says it looked like he was really enjoying himself, having a good memorial day. >> the employees working that evening were under 21 years old. a few of them were teens. >> i started working for cup foods when i was finishing up my senior year of high school. i would say before the incident, i had worked there for about two and a half months. >> so, george floyd is inside the cup foods, and goes to buy a pack of cigarettes. >> and he was walking past the front of the cashier.
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he was like, can i get cigarettes? and i was like, yeah. >> and he got to the counter, and he pulled some money out of his pocket, handed the gentleman some money. >> i probably took the bill, i probably did this, and then i proceeded to take it and do this. >> the store clerk, chris martin, looks at the bill and immediately knows this is probably a counterfeit bill, this is fake. >> immediately my anxiety actually went up, because i was like, how do i go about this? >> and that's where the story took the turn that we now know. >> we went outside, tried to ask him to come inside, and he did not want to come inside, so i went back inside, and i talked to my manager and i offered to pay for the bill. and he said, go back outside and tell him to come inside. once again, for the second time, he did not want to come inside. >> and that point, his manager says, okay, we'll call the
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police then. >> suspect is a black male, 6 foot or taller. possibly intoxicated as well. >> so, the officers that were sent to 38th and chicago after that 911 call were two rookies in the minneapolis police department. officer lane, just a matter of days on the force, and officer kueng had been on a little bit longer. >> we got there and, um, entered the building. there was a staff member there that said, they're still here. >> before they drive off, they're parked right here. this is the fake bill from the gentleman. >> we see in those body camera videos from officer lane and officer kueng that they go out to the suv. >> as i was walking across the street they both started kind of big under the seat, looked like they were reaching for something. >> and officer lane walks up to george floyd's side of the car and taps the window with the butt end of his flashlight. you can see george floyd react immediately.
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he's completely startled, shocked that someone is at the window and opens the door. >> stay in the car. let me see your other hand. >> i'm sorry, i'm sorry. >> let me see your other hand. >> please mr. officer. >> both hands. >> i didn't do nothing. >> put your [ bleep ] hands up right now. >> he didn't do that. and he was just, oh, it's no big deal, or whatever and kept his hand down there. he just glanced back so i took my gun out. >> what are you feeling at that point? >> i'm wondering what he is doing and want to know where his other hand is going. >> why is there a gun coming out? i think that caught a lot of people's attention as to, wait, this was a call about a bogus bill. >> dang, man. >> from the first images from the body camera video, you see this encounter that seems aggressive almost from the start. >> put your hands on top of your head. >> in all our years of -- of running our convenience store, i don't think i remember ever
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having a violent confrontation with somebody with a -- with a counterfeit bill. >> step out and face away. >> okay mr. officer, please don't shoot me, please, man. >> i'm not going to shoot you. step out and face away. >> i'm going to get out, man. please don't shot me, man. >> i'm not shooting you, man. >> he's telling him, i'm scared. i don't wanna die today. they're telling him, you're not going to die today, you're not going to die. >> step out of the vehicle and step away from me, all right? >> yes, sir. >> and i was concerned that he was going to try and take off, drive away in the vehicle, so i kind of pulled him out. he started trying to turn around, so i pushed him into the door frame, which was another thing we were taught to do if someone is not complying. >> stop resisting, then. >> i'm not! >> yes, you are. >> keung came around, and we ended up getting him handcuffed. >> stand up. >> please, please, man! >> people of our skin color, when we start getting treated like that by the police, we tend to tense up, and we tend to get scared a little bit. >> take a seat. sit down for me. >> thank you, man.
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thank you, mr. officer. >> sit down! >> thank you, man. >> you see the film. he didn't resist. he didn't do anything. he was panicking. he was scared. because he probably felt what was about to happen to him. >> you got an i.d. on you? >> i got one at home. >> all right, what's your name? >> george. >> george? >> george perry floyd. >> we were already trained as kids on what and what not to do. your parents told you, if you see the police, you better not do nothing. you lay on that ground, you lay your hands out. don't do nothing to them. because everybody knew what was going on. >> george floyd grew up in the cuney homes in houston. it's known as one of the notoriously toughest areas in houston. >> cuney homes is one of the largest housing development projects in houston, texas, where george floyd grew up. >> most of the people there are on section eight, are
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low-income, impoverished. few have jobs. >> poor, poor. poor beyond measure. they didn't have nothing. >> third ward was one of these places where you always saw police officers effecting traffic stops or stopping individuals suspected of having drugs or guns or whatever. so for george floyd, growing up in a place like that, it was a life surrounded by police and by drugs and by violence. >> growing up, our only way out that we thought was our way out was sports, rapping, or drugs. the reason being, we didn't have no doctors in our families. we didn't have no lawyers. the only way you ran into a lawyer was if someone got in trouble. >> for george, the way out, it ended up being sports, basketball and football. >> floyd played football, and he was good at it, but he was amazing on the basketball court. >> it was like, ooh! it was very few people that could dunk the ball in middle school.
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perry was one. >> he did get a scholarship to college for sports. he was just that good. >> his plans was if he didn't make it far as the nba or the nfl, he wanted to be in law enforcement. he wanted to be a chief of police at one time. >> but george was unprepared academically for the rigors that he would encounter in college. and it was when he came home that he started having problems with the law. >> because, man, people are quick to count you out, man, but just so strict on counting you in. okay, can i talk to you, please? >> if you get in this car, we can talk! >> one of my employees called and said, hey, mike, mike. i said, what? she said, there's a guy outside and the police are killing him. >> i can't breathe! the ups and downs of frequent mood swings can take you to deep, depressive lows. or, give you unusually high energy, even when depressed.
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do you know why we pulled you out of the car? because you was not listening to anything we told you. >> right, but i didn't know what was going on. >> you listen to us and we will tell you what's going on all right? >> is he on something? >> no, he got a thing going on, i'm tell you, about the police. >> what does that mean? >> he have problems all the time, especially when that man sees that gun like that. >> all right, stand up. >> please, man. >> since we had three people and only us two officers, i was like, we should put him in the car. we're going to get him secured. >> so after officer kueng tells george floyd they're gonna put him in the car, officer lane comes up to help escort george floyd across the street back to their squad car and asks him, you know, hey, man, are you on something? you're acting erratic. >> what indicated to you that mr. floyd may have been under the influence? >> his body language. kind of the restless and constant movement. are you on something right now?
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>> i'm not on nothing! >> because you were acting real erratic. >> i'm scared, man! >> from childhood, george floyd was grappling with an influx of drugs in his community. >> you've got violence going on, drugs. just everything going on around here that you have to avoid, that you have to weave through to try to, you know, make a better life for yourself, so it's kind of hard starting off behind the 8 ball. >> he did drugs. he wasn't a heavy drug addict. i mean, he still went to work. he still was able to provide for himself. he still was able to take care of his business. i never knew him to do fentanyl or methamphetamines, ever. >> the next decade of george's life was a cycling in and out of the criminal justice system. it started with a drug offense
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in 1996. >> george just got caught up with -- you know, with the wrong people at the wrong time. >> he was involved and arrested several times for drugs and for an armed robbery, ultimately, that landed him in a texas prison. >> we all have a past. we all have things we did that we regret that we don't -- we wish we didn't do. >> you think that your life is going to go one way, and it kind of goes another. i just see him trying to figure things out. >> george floyd came to minnesota looking for a better life, and he landed here because of a gentleman in minneapolis who actually bought his bus ticket here and said, come to minneapolis. come stay in this home with other men, get clean, and we're going to fix you up and set you
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on a better path in life. >> he just wanted to get free from drugs and alcohol. >> and from what i understan from floyd, if he completed the program, they would help him get employment and he'd be able to get custody of gianna. >> ready. my name is gigi, and i am the daughter of george floyd. >> george's daughter was the apple of his eye. you could see, every time he talked about it, he just beamed. his eyes got big, and he was just -- the smile would come across his face. >> you know what, his baby is his world. he loved gigi. >> he used to call me butter cup. i liked that name, butter cup. >> he wanted to just be a better man and a better father. >> he loved her with all his heart. he'd call me non-stop. how's gigi doing? how's gigi? i'm like, stop calling me, man. >> and he was telling me he had
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a job. he was down there working in the program. he was doing good, he like d it. >> he went down there and graduated the program. and he got his commercial driver's license. and people who know floyd, that's a big accomplishment. >> he was pretty successful with working. he had a couple of jobs. he was working at a steel mill or steel plant. he did random security jobs. he was still able to make ends and odds meet. >> you looking good. you working now. you a bouncer. you got a job. you work at the salvation army at the boys' club and you a bouncer? >> conga latin bistro is a restaurant and nightclub. it's like the latino cheers. >> i found george floyd through an ad in craigslist. i was looking for security staff. and i interviewed him right in those booths over there. when i saw him, i said, well,
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tall guy is intimidating. but at the same time, he's friendly. >> you felt safe not just because he was big, but you felt safe because he brought, like, this sense of joy in knowing that he was doing his job and that he just wanted to make sure everybody's having a good time. >> all the people there loved him. you know what i mean? >> people migrated towards him. and he was a flirt. i'm not even going to lie about that. >> hey, baby! >> george's life was really coming together. things had been as good for him as they had ever been, and then his mom died and everything changed. >> when ms. sissy died, it was like a piece of him died. >> george loved his mother. and his mother was bigger than life. >> his mother reminded him of everything that was happy and loving in their home, and she wasn't there anymore. >> his mother's death took a toll on him. he thought he would have his mama forever. it really, really hurted him. >> and he took it real hard.
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he was a strong, strong person, but, uh, that broke him. >> just looking at him, i knew. he was never going to be the same. >> then came the pandemic, and he lost his job. >> it was just a whole lot of feeling and emotions he was going through. like a week and a half before he died, he said, man, i love you still. i was like, i love you too, george. he was like, i'm going to call you later. all right. that was the last time i saw him. >> just unlock the door. >> ow! >> stop falling down. >> i'm claustrophobic, man! >> i'm claustrophobic, man! >> stand up! stay on your feet and face the car door. >> he's always been claustrophobic. he's always been like that. that's why he doesn't fly because he can't get off. he prefers to take the bus. at least you could stop, get off, smoke a cigarette, get back on, stretch your legs. he's always been claustrophobic. >> okay, okay, okay. >> take a seat! >> i'm going in. >> no, you are not!
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>> i feel like by me knowing him, and when they were trying to put him in the car, and he was saying, i'm not that kind of guy. >> i'm not that kind of guy! i'm not that kind of guy, man! >> floyd wasn't that kind of guy. he was trying to do the right thing. >> take a seat. >> i'm going to die, man. >> you need to take a seat right now. >> and i just had covid, man! i don't want to go back to that. >> him actually being scared and fearing the reaper. that's what's going to stick with me. >> i'll roll the windows down if you pull your legs in all right? i'll put the air on. >> y'all doing me like that. look at that. look at that. >> obviously he didn't want to get in that car. >> yeah. >> did you ever think about maybe a different way to handle this? hey, maybe we should just sit him on the curb again? >> no. >> he would not go in the backseat. he resisted it to the extent that they had already called another squad for help. >> take a seat! >> i'm not that kind of guy. >> charles mcmillian is a bystander who's one of the first to even get involved in the arrest of george floyd. >> you can't win. >> i don't want to try to win.
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>> quit resisting, bro. >> you hear him pleading in the background -- you can't win. just give up. you're not going to win this way. >> he kept resisting arrest because he kept telling them that he was claustrophobic to the police car. >> you ain't going to win. >> i don't want to do this. >> i'll roll the window down. >> he was really one of the first people we saw who really tried to step in and do something. nobody knew what was coming next. >> man, i'm scared as [ bleep ] man. this is my body of proof. proof of less joint pain and clearer skin. proof that i can fight psoriatic arthritis... ...with humira. humira targets and blocks a specific source of inflammation that contributes to both joint and skin symptoms. it's proven to help relieve pain, stop further irreversible joint damage and clear skin in many adults. humira can lower your ability to fight infections.
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right? >> north side vehicle. >> i'm going to die in here. i'm dying, man. >> at the point derek chauvin arrives on scene, officers lane and kueng have george floyd near the squad car. they're trying to get him into the back of the car. >> pull your legs in. >> okay, okay. >> and are not succeeding. >> officer derek chauvin and officer tou thao are now on the scene. >> don't do me like that. >> they jump into action. they're trying to get george floyd into that patrol car. >> when you guys were responding to the call, what information did you have? >> it was a forgery in progress. it sounded like it was something urgent, like they were struggling with somebody. >> i'm not a bad guy, man. >> he started really thrashing back and forth, and i think he was hitting his face on the glass that goes to the front seat. >> that's my wrist. that's my wrist, man. >> chauvin shows up. chauvin takes over. >> please! >> officer chauvin takes both of his hands and puts them right around the back of george floyd's neck and starts
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to then try and push him back into the squad car. >> i don't think anyone foresaw where this was going to go. >> going down. going down. i'm going down! >> so, we don't know a lot about derek chauvin. a lot of the details we have about derek chauvin come from his personnel file. >> chauvin was an officer for 19 years with the minneapolis police department. >> he had been a field training officer for other people in the force. so he had been used by the department as somebody to look up to and to emulate. >> for a lot of people, the image of derek chauvin is what they see on the body camera video. that's the image people have. >> that's not the derek i knew back in high school. my name is janelle stadt. i've known derek since
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elementary school at pullman. >> derek grew up in st. paul park, minnesota. maybe 3,000 to 4,000 people, one elementary school. average middle class neighborhoods. blue collar, probably mostly caucasian back then. >> he joined the force in 2001 as a full-time sworn minneapolis police officer. looking in derek chauvin's personnel record, we get a pretty good idea of what his disciplinary records look like and what civilian complaints look like. >> derek chauvin had at least 17 complaints against him. even among officers who've been on the job for a long time, that number is high. >> but he had he also received all sorts of commendations, awards for his valor. citizens writing and calling in to extol his work as a police
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officer. so there are obviously two sides to this very complicated man. >> in his personal life, a few years later, he got married to his wife kellie. >> she's a photographer according to what officials had on her as far as her finances. she also was a real estate agent who earned quite a bit for this family. >> in an interview she gave "the st. paul pioneer press," she kind of described him as a doting husband. she said he's a big softy under that uniform, a total gentleman, and appeared to have a really good relationship. >> presenting mrs. oakdale, kellie chauvin escorted by her husband, derek. >> she was in the running for mrs. minnesota america. and there's a video of that competition where derek chauvin is there supporting her. >> i'm derek chauvin and my outstanding wife is
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kellie chauvin, mrs. oakdale, minnesota. >> thank you, sir. if you could add an additional competition to the pageant, what would it be and why? >> ooh, good question. i think i would actually add a physical event. since we have enough height here, i believe a rock climbing wall would fit. teams of two, timed. >> well, you're not competing, i'm talking about your wife here. thank you. >> over the years in his off-duty hours, chauvin worked as a uniform police officer doing security work for a club called el nuevo rodeo. >> derek chauvin worked for me for 17 years. sometimes he was really nice and really empathetic to people. and sometimes he was just not. >> derek chauvin made everyone uncomfortable who ran into him in that club or outside.
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it was, i'm mpd, and i'm here, and i'm watching everything. that was the vibe that you felt, and it wasn't welcoming. >> how ironic is it that derek chauvin and george floyd worked in the same place? >> derek chauvin, he worked security outside. inside, george floyd was working as a security guard, as well. >> at one point, they were just >> george was very sweet and affecti affectionate and just like a big teddy bear. >> at one point, they were just two dudes trying to make some extra money, working at a nightclub to support their lifestyles. but then when they met again, it was now a black man accused of a crime and a white police officer there to investigate. and too often, we've seen in this nation that when those two things mix, oftentimes there's a tragic outcome.
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>> you're under arrest right now for forgery. >> george floyd is still handcuffed at this point. >> let's take him out. >> i said let's use the mrt, maximum restraint technique. >> that technique tells the officers, when you encounter someone who's actively resisting put their hands behind their back and handcuff them and kneel on their neck or back in order to keep them down. >> jesus christ. >> video shows chauvin puts his left knee onto george floyd's neck and upper back while officers kueng and lane pin him down in the middle of his back and hold his legs down. >> and that starts the clock on what the prosecution says is this 9 minutes and 29 seconds where derek chauvin stayed on george floyd and knelt his knee into his neck. depression makes it hard for me to follow through with my plans. my antidepressant helps,
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>> you got him down, man, let him breathe at least, man. >> i think this case has brought up so much about, what are you supposed to do when you see officers trying to make an arrest like this and you see something you don't think is right? >> oh, my god. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. >> relax. >> i can't breathe! >> you're doing fine. you're talking fine. >> get off his neck! >> i think in many ways, those bystanders were like many of us who thought they were witnessing something awful, a crime, and they want it to stop. but they also know that they're powerless, that they can get but so close to the flame before they might be burned. >> you can get him off the
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ground. you're being a bum. you can get him off the ground, bro. >> donald williams was one of the most vocal bystanders on the scene that day. >> he had no feeling. he had no emotions. you know, you look in a man's eyes, and you can tell a man who they are by looking through their soul, and he had none. he's not resisting arrest or nothing. he knew what he was doing in a way, or he had done it before. he just don't >> donald williams is from minneapolis, and he went to cup foods that day, just to pop in to grab something quick, and he started yelling at the officers, calling them names, and trying to get their attention, saying look, it looks you're holding him in a blood choke. >> you're trapping his breathing right now, bro. >> being realistic at the moment, all i could do is speak
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and yell and, you know, tell them what they were doing was wrong. you're stopping his breathing. and hope they understand this is another human being they are doing that to. >> i can't breathe, officer. >> you see floyd talking. you see him begging for his life. he's calling for his mother. >> when i heard him say mama, that's when it got real with me. >> wow. it was through him saying -- that's the part. he went back when his mama died. >> his nose is bleeding. like, come on now. >> i couldn't believe how long it went on. >> aah! >> at one point derek chauvin looked into the camera, and it was just this impassive, coldhearted look. >> he's enjoying that! >> he had his hands in his pocket. it was like he was on vacation.
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>> i said, should we roll him on his side? and i believe chauvin said, you know, we have him, an ambulance is coming, and we got him, we're just going to hold here. >> he's not breathing. >> we have a woman come into the video, and she says, i'm a minneapolis firefighter. is everything okay? do you have a pulse? >> you have a firefighter. they're trained as emergency medical technicians. they're on the scene. >> are you really a firefighter? >> officer thao asks her to get on the sidewalk. >> check his [ bleep ] pulse! >> and as a firefighter and an emt is concerned they're holding him down this long and he a peers to be unconscious. >> bro, he has not moved one
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time! >> the reaction from derek chauvin is he immediately grabs his mace and starts to shake it. >> he got mace. >> i think for so many people that just showed for them how it seemed like how little george floyd's life mattered to derek chauvin and to the officers around, that what mattered more was instituting whatever version of law and order they felt was appropriate at the time. >> everyone was yelling, check his pulse. he can't breathe. >> check his pulse! >> if derek chauvin had the knowledge that there was no pulse, he should have rolled him over immediately and started performing cpr immediately. that should've been it. >> them people that was around, they tried their best to do whatever they could. and that other cop stopped that. you're stopping people from helping. >> my heart goes out to the witnesses that saw him while he was still moving on the ground.
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when i came outside, he was limp. and at this point i'm standing with my hands on my head, observing helplessly. >> i think in many ways, that crowd on the sideline represents america on the sidelines watching that videotape. like, stop. why? he can't breathe. can't you see that? show him some humanity. and they didn't. >> 9 minutes and 29 seconds. it's not the same as an instant when a gun goes off. >> everybody watched him. i watched him murder this man. i watched his life come out of his body. why? because i watched this man murder another man that look like me. for no reason.
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outrage tonight over the deeply disturbing death of a black man handcuffed in minneapolis. >> i got a call from my sister. she said, perry's gone. and i thought, gone where? and she said, he was killed. >> i look at the video for like
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then seconds. i was like, oh, my god. i turned it off. heard his voice screaming. not this way. not this way. can't be him. not this way. whew. >> when i first saw the images of george floyd on the ground, i wasn't shocked, i wasn't surprised. i was saddened. and my first thought was, here we go again. >> it was different than other videos. this was people watching a man slowly die. >> this knee on the neck was reminiscent of an old-school lynching. and most modern-day folk have never been to one. and now they have. >> what happened to floyd happens every day in this country in education, in health services, and in every area of american life. >> police chiefs aren't going to
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hold the officers accountable, but when people are watching, then the spotlight's put on you. and so this case had the spotlight on it 24/7. >> the officer who had his knee on the neck of george floyd should be charged, and i'm calling on hennepin county attorney to do that. >> clearly there was something different in this case, because just days later, the mayor announced that these officers were fired. fired! and we hadn't seen that before. >> people had decided that a new world had to be had to come about. no more could we live in a society where it's acceptable for a person to be murdered in cold blood in front of the world. >> there's not only the firing of all four officers who were involved, there was then the arrest of the principal officer, derek chauvin, and there were multiple charges against him. >> former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin has been charged by the hennepin county
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attorney's office with murder and with manslaughter. >> when an officer is charged in the death of a black man, a lot of people following the story say, that's that. okay, resolution. case solved. but so many people in the black community know that that's not enough. that's where the attention on a case should start. >> people became so frustrated that they took to social media to show the world that these officers were walking free. >> there's video of j. alexander keung being confronted by a woman seeing him in a grocery store, upset that he was shopping. >> did you think people weren't going to recognize you? honestly, did you? you don't have to right to be here. >> george floyd died at a particular moment in american history. people were dieing from covid, and then 9 minutes and 29
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seconds of a knee on the neck of black america. >> i think that just ignited a level of outrage that could not be contained. it required people to hit the streets all over the world, and they did. >> protests across the country now turning deadly. anger spilling into the streets over the death of george floyd. >> demonstrators clashing with officers over the death of george floyd. parts of the city in flames overnight. >> the protesting, the rioting, the looting, and all of the consequences of those actions. it's been really difficult to watch so much pain in the community. >> to see a police precinct burning, it didn't seem real. >> there was in the a moment where some kind of nonlethal round wasn't being fired. [ gunshots ] >> this generation, they're not
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interested in these false ideas of hope or these empty expressions of justice. they want it, and they want it now, and it's a non-negotiable. >> thousands have filled the streets calling for justice. >> say his name! >> george floyd! >> say his name! >> george floyd! >> 70,000 people. peaceful. all coming out, you know, for george. >> we are going to go fight for justice for my daddy. >> there was also this sense of hope that maybe our numbers will be so great, our voices will be so loud, that we can no longer be dismissed when we say, we got to have change. >> ten months after this incident, after they lost their loved one, the man accused of killing him is finally going to face a jury. >> whether or not you think officer derek chauvin is innocent or guilty, this trial
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it took 9 minutes and 29 seconds for the lives of these two men and the world to change forever. >> america is watching. >> we don't often see chiefs of police testifying against their own. that is huge for the prosecution. >> we watched the blue wall of protection sort of fall down in this case. >> so what should be happening now if this is being handled properly? >> there would be no reason not to turn him to the side at this point or not earlier. i don't understand why he would say no. >> his name was george perry floyd jr.
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♪ >> george was always perry to his classmates and to me. each child wrote an essay on, what i want to be when i grow up. when i grow up, i want to be a supreme court judge. >> i'm derek chauvin, and my outstanding wife is kellie chauvin, mrs. oakdale, minnesota. >> she described him as a big softy underneath that uniform. >> being in the courtroom when i look at everybody else, they see a case and a cause. i just see my brother. >> remember when you said daddy changed the world? >> mm-hmm. for all the black daddies in the world.
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when you go to george floyd square, you see america. it looks like the intersection of any urban neighborhood in america. it looks like a place where dreams don't live long. but now it looks more like a shrine. >> tonight, the eyes of the nation on minneapolis as the trial for derek chauvin, the officer accused of killing george floyd, is set to begin. >> at the start of the trial, you're seeing a downtown minneapolis that looks nothing like it usually would. there are tall, barricaded fences surrounding the
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courthouse. there are national guard troops stationed all over. >> so, that morning, the floyd family was there as well. and they held a moment outside of the hennepin county government center, taking that knee for over eight minutes. i mean, when you hear silence for that long, it -- it just shows how long that time is. >> george floyd galvanized cities all across america and all across to world. >> my hope for the jury is that it would be a fair and impartial jury that will respect george floyd's right to live, to say that george floyd was a human being. the whole world is watching.
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the whole world is watching. >> jury selection begins on march 9th. there are a lot of perspective jurors, more than 300 people, and all of them are given a 16-page questionnaire to fill out. >> at the very beginning of this case, it's announced that there's a civil settlement with the floyd family by the city for $27 million. >> the civil lawsuits filed last year against the city now one of the largest settlements. >> it was explosive. you typically would not have a civil suit settling before the criminal trial happened. >> if i could get him back, i would give all of this back. >> and i remember thinking, what's going to happen at the trial? >> judge peter cahill excuses
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two jurors because they said that settlement might influence their perception of chauvin's guilt. we would later find out that the jury was pretty diverse. four blacks, two who identified as multiracial, and the rest of them write. >> say his name. >> george floyd! >> say his name. >> george floyd! >> this is a trial like no other, because of the defendant in this case. >> police officers are not above the law! >> well, most police officers are not ever charged with any crime committed in the line of duty. hell, they're never even disciplined. so they certainly don't go on trial. and then when they are charged, they're not charged with murder. so this is -- it's a huge deal. >> i need a promise that isn't going to happen to my dad. i need a promise this isn't going to happen to any of my kids!
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>> the prosecution team consisted of veteran attorneys from within and from outside the hennepin county d.a.'s office. >> we want to you know something about who george floyd was because he was something to a lot of somebodies in the world. >> he made a point not to make a statement to race but george floyd as a person. >> i would tell you you can believe your eyes it's a homicide, it's murder. you can believe your eyes. >> oftentimes in these high profile cases, the prosecution, they rely on expert testimony. in this case, the prosecutors say over and over again, basically, look at the tape. trust your eyes. we all see the same thing. >> please.
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>> the prosecution built this very simple narrative that the people who live there saw something wrong. >> your honor, the state would call jenna scurry to the stand. >> from the dispatcher, this seasoned professional who's been around the block, who's seen police encounters before. >> my instincts were telling me that something's wrong. something is not right. >> to the civilians who were minding their business. >> was there anything about the scene that you didn't want your cousin to see? >> yes. >> and what was that? >> a man terrified, scared, begging for his life. >> what do you want? >> i can't breathe. >> he has his knee on my neck. >> you can see for yourselves. you don't have to be a legal scholar to understand that narrative. you just have to be a human being with a heart and the eyes t see. >> mr. mcmillian, do you need a minute?
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>> oh, my god. being in the courtroom, everybody else, they see a case and a cause. i just see my brother. being in there brought back a lot of memories, just thinking about george, because they showed him over and over and over again. >> i think the heart of the derek chauvin murder trial is, what caused george floyd's death? the prosecution says it was derek chauvin's kneeling on george floyd's neck for nine and a half minutes. >> the most important numbers you will hear in this trial are 9-2-9. >> the prosecution wanted to hammer home the strategy that derek chauvin betrayed his badge by using excessive force. he had a knee on his neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds.
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>> in this 9 minutes and 29 seconds, you will see that as mr. floyd is handcuffed there on the ground, he is verbalizing 27 times, i can't breathe. please, i can't breathe. >> we've been seeing medical testimony, so many different experts coming up to the stand. >> i do. >> mark tobin was one of the prosecution's most important witnesses. an expert in breathing, a pulmonologist. >> what we're seeing is that half of his body weight, plus half his gear weight is coming down. that's 91.5 pounds is coming down directly on mr. floyd's neck. >> have you formed an opinion to a reasonable degree of medical certainty on the cause of mr. floyd's death? >> yes, mr. floyd died from a low level of oxygen. and this caused damage to his brain. >> dr. tobin walked the jury,
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frame by frame, in that video. >> at the beginning you can see he's conscious. you can see slight flickering. and then it disappears. so, one second he's alive, and one second he's no longer. >> we asked dr. stpehanie widmer to demonstrate how the compression from derek chauvin's knee could affect george floyd's breathing. >> the prosecutor made a point about chauvin's body weight, that half his body weight, 91.5 pounds, was on his back in addition to his police equipment, right? his belt, his flashlight, his radio, his taser, his gun. all that weight was on floyd as well. >> this is a lot of weight in a small area, a fragile area that you're applying all this weight to. if anybody's compressing on this, your airway, your entryway
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for breathing, it can kind of be like breathing through a straw. >> so breathe out. >> mm-hmm. >> that's uncomfortable. that's uncomfortable. and we're just standing here. there's no one on our back. we're not on the pavement. that would have been a difficult situation to be in. >> you will learn derek chauvin did exactly what he had to do. >> i listened to what everyone had to say, and it was an emotional roller coaster ride. he needs to be held accountable for his actions, everything he did. some days, you just don't have it.
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the calls for justice for george floyd growing louder. the black man in minneapolis dying after an encounter with police. his death causing national outrage. >> no justice, no peace! >> this video was powerful, and it became clear that not only is everyone in minneapolis wondering what's going on, people all across the country
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and all across the world were trying to figure out what's going on in minneapolis. >> hands up! >> don't shoot! >> hands up! >> don't shoot! >> in minneapolis, the issue of officers interacting with people of color and having problems or using excessive force against people of color, i think, is very widespread. >> in the last eight years, they have taken in 3,434 complaints. they have disciplined 20 of them. >> and when the case is closed without discipline, the public never gets to learn what happened in that case and what sort of talk the officer had with their supervisor. >> i'm about to die. >> relax! >> when derek chauvin had his knee on george floyd's neck, he knew that we have a culture of impunity in minneapolis police department. >> derek chauvin had about 17
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different complaints lodged against him, but the detail of those complaints are really not known. >> we have no idea what they're about. they could be nothing or they could all be really serious and we don't know. i think it's pretty reasonable to suspect that there is some misconduct hidden within those complaints that were closed, no discipline. >> back in 2013, lasean braddock accused derek chauvin and another officer of abusing him after a traffic stop. >> i was beat up and mistreated by derek chauvin. i remember my face being on the ground and it was cold and it ground and it was cold and it was hurting. he had his knees on my head and my back. >> braddock is charged with failure to comply and obstruction of justice, but in the end, all those charges against him are dismissed. >> so i put a complaint in against him, hoping that somethin would happen. i don't know to this day if
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they processed it, if they reviewed it, or anything. >> minneapolis office of police conduct review has no comment about the complaint. >> i feel like if they'd have took me seriously, then george floyd might still be alive, you know? >> for over 20 years, we've operated a hotline and people call in with their complaints about police. on may 25th that evening i was just in my home and people started messaging me saying, you've got to see this video on facebook. get on facebook. so i went up and i looked at the video, and almost immediately i said, that's derek chauvin. i recognized him because we had gotten so many complaints about him on our hotline. >> shauch is charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of george floyd. >> it's really hard to convince a jury that a cop committed murder. even when you can see it with your own eyes, right? >> you're going to learn in this case a lot about what it means to be a public servant and to
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have the honor of wearing this badge. >> here's what he's doing in this case. one, derek chauvin caused the death of george floyd. it's causation. and number two, his decision to put his knee on the neck was unreasonable. and they have to prove both of those things beyond a reasonable doubt. it's a police officer, so that's a really high burden, and they know it. >> mr. floyd at some point the completely passed out. mr. chauvin continues on as he had, knee on the neck, knee on the back. you'll see he does not let up and he does not get up. mr. chauvin is told that they can't even find a pulse on mr. floyd. you will see that he does not let up and that he does not get up. >> one of the defense's strategies was that derek chauvin had been trained to do what he did, that the kind of restraint he kept george floyd in was all part of
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what he had learned from the academy. >> you will learn that derek chauvin did exactly what he had been trained to do over the course of his 19-year career. the use of force is not attractive, but it is a necessary component of policing. >> erik nelson told the jury that derek chauvin did exactly what his training had taught him to do in this incident. prosecutors pounced on that theory right away but bringing in the police chief to rebut that argument. >> that is not part of our policy. that is not what we teach. once mr. floyd had stopped resisting, and certainly once he was in distress and trying to verbalize that, that should have stopped. it is not part of our training and it is certainly not part of
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our ethics or our values. >> we don't often see chiefs of police testifying against their own. we don't often see a police chief getting up there and saying, my officer in high stress situation didn't do the right thing. that is huge for the prosecution. >> so, the prosecution says, believe your eyes. the defense says, consider this other scientific evidence. and at the end of the day, the defense doesn't have to convince everybody. >> if even one juror thinks, well, maybe there's a reasonable doubt about that, they've won. >> as the defense is preparing to present its case, just 10 miles away, there is another incident, again with a white police officer, unarmed african-american man who ends up dead. >> breaking news in brooklyn center. >> a 20-year-old black man
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derek chauvin, and there's this news that shocks everyone. >> the deadly shooting of a young black driver outside minneapolis. >> so, 20-year-old daunte wright is pulled over by police for an expired registration sticker on his license plate. after they discover a warrant was out for his arrest, police decide to take wright into custody. >> i'm not doing nothing. >> stop bro. >> i'll tase you! ta taser, taser, taser! [ bleep ] i just shot him. >> officer kim potter claimed she mistakenly used her gun instead of a taser. she's been charged with second-degree manslaughter and she hasn't yet entered a plea. >> here we are in the middle of the derek chauvin prosecution. the trial is happening. we have been protesting at the courthouse, but things went to a whole new level in terms of frustration and anger at this latest killing of daunte right. but overnight the protests
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continued nationwide. more than 50 arrests made in minneapolis and brooklyn center. >> it's devastating. it's traumatizing. as black people over and over and over again, you're seeing black people die at the hands of police, like the shooting death of philando castile, and the officer is acquitted. the people i've talked with have said, we're exhausted. >> so, now with tension at a fever pitch outside the courthouse, the defense kicks off its case by turning the jury's attention to george floyd's use of illegal drugs. >> the defense wasted no time in bringing up this video that they were able to get the judge to approve. and it had to do with a prior arrest of george floyd in may of 2019. >> sir, passenger, can you undo your seat belt? go ahead and undo your seatbelt. >> oh, sure. man, please, i don't want to get
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shot. >> the passenger was unresponsive and noncompliant to my commands. >> keep your hands where i can [ bleep ] see them.! okay? put them up on the dash. put them on the dash. >> don't shoot me, sir. please. please don't shoot me. >> i'm not going to shoot you. put your hands on the dash! >> okay, okay, okay, okay. >> the defense used this stop in 2019 to also bring a paramedic on the stand who had been at the scene, who had taken floyd's blood pressure and had told him it was sky high. >> were you able to learn that mr. floyd had consumed some narcotics that day? >> yes. i don't remember if it was oxy or percocet, but it was opioid-based. it wasn't real consistent with his behavior. at that point he was real elevated and agitated. >> the defense was hoping that the jury would connect these two incidents and see that the pattern is there of how george floyd acted. >> defense attorneys always try
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to sully the victim, we call it. if we go back to 2019 and we start asking questions, maybe we create some reasonable doubt. >> but the defense team's has a huge hurdle. they have to rebut that damning video of their client kneeling on george floyd's neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds. they call barry brodd to the stand, a use of force expert and retired police officer. >> i felt that derek chauvin was justified, was acting with objective reasonableness, following minneapolis police department policy and current standards of law enforcement in his interactions with mr. floyd. >> this was not what we heard from the chief of police in minneapolis and those multiple supervising officers, who all said that what chauvin did was uncalled for and was not consistent with their training. >> brodd reviewed all of the evidence.
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he reached the conclusion that the knee on george floyd was not technically a use of force. >> i don't consider a prone control as a use of force. >> we reviewed chauvin's actions that day with police training expert duane dieter. dieter operates a center that trains law enforcement from all over the country on how and when to use force in close quarters. >> mr. floyd's now in the prone position, and they decided to put him in the prone position. >> in this case, chauvin is applying a technique that is approved by the minneapolis police department. >> yes. >> your issue not that he applied it, but that he wasn't situationally aware enough, at the very least, to adjust it, to do something else. >> that's correct. as a person lays down in a prone position, it is stopping some of their respiratory capability. >> so what should be happening now if this is being handled properly? >> knees off the neck, knees off the back, like it should have
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in the beginning. get him in a recovery position, turn him to the side. >> in fact, a minneapolis police department training manual states that a subject should be placed in a, quote, recovery position to alleviate positional asphyxia. >> should we roll him on his side? >> no. just leave him. >> okay. >> the defense called chauvin's actions justified and reasonable. you agree? >> no. as soon as mr. floyd became someone that you needed to treat, there was no way justifiable. cannot be justifiable because you have to treat a person that needs medical care. >> on cross-examination by the prosecution, that use of force expert, he admitted that you do put a suspect in a side recovery position if you want to alleviate the danger of positional asphyxiation. >> it's fairly simple to do. just pull them to their side. >> but whether chauvin followed proper procedure or not, the
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next witness for the defense is going to say that floyd's death had nothing to do with his oxygen being choked off. >> mr. floyd died of a cardiac arrhythmia. >> and would jurors finally hear from the man in the center of all this, that stoic figure now seen on those videos? would derek chauvin himself take the stand in his own defense?
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♪ it seems that when george floyd arrived at 30th and chicago, he had a lot going on internally. this was his health condition. >> hypertensive heart disease, coronary artery disease, paraganglioma tumor, sickle cell trait, covid-19 virus. and i do probably think out of all of these, the most interesting is the coronary artery disease. he did have fentanyl in his system. he had 11 nanograms per milliliter in his system.
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>> now, was it enough to kill him? >> probably the one thing that i can tell you for sure, this was not a fentanyl overdose. >> even though george floyd physically looked like a very fit man, there were things going on inside his body. >> yes. i think it's safe to say maybe he wasn't the healthiest person, but again, did these things really tip him over the edge? it's also hard to say that. ♪ ♪ >> now, remember, the prosecution maintained that floyd died from a lack of oxygen after derek chauvin put his knee on his neck. >> mr. floyd died from a low level of oxygen. >> on the second day of the defense's case, there was just one witness the entire day who was one of the most important for this defense, and that's dr. david fowler. he was the former chief medical examiner for the state of maryland.
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>> doctor, did you form ultimately opinions as to the cause and manner of death of mr. floyd? >> yes. >> and what would those conclusions be? >> mr. floyd died of a cardiac arrhythmia. >> dr. fowler testified that george floyd died from a cardiac arrhythmia that was caused by several different factors, including floyd's illicit drug use that day and his enlarged heart. his heart was working harder while he was struggling with the officers than it would have. >> how would you classify the manner of death? >> so, this is one of those cases where you have so many conflicting, different manners. when you put all of those together, it's very difficult to say which of those is the most accurate, so i would fall back
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to undetermined. >> two leading experts, two completely different conclusions about george floyd's cause of death. most of us want exact information from medical professionals. we want to know exactly what happened. so why the vagueness? why can't anyone say, this is exactly how and why george floyd died? >> i think the issue is because he did not get to medical attention until after his demise. we don't have a single test or even an assessment of what was going on with him prior to his demise to tell us exactly what was happening inside of his body. >> but chauvin's defense attorney contended that if floyd was able to talk, then he was able to breathe. >> you're talking. >> you're going to kill me, man. >> takes a heck of a lot of oxygen to say that. >> we could hear them on the body camera footage, where they
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say basically if you're talking, you can breathe. >> so, that is sort of a misconception. this is a prolonged period. if you're not getting enough air in, you can talk, you're expelling air, but are you necessarily able to get enough in to, you know, sustain the amount of oxygen that your body needs to stay alive? >> because speaking air goes out. >> right. >> breathing requires you to take air in. >> where i come from, somebody says, "i can't breathe," that's a medical complaint, so you have to take that seriously. and in this case, this is somebody who did need medical attention. >> derek chauvin's body language was just someone who just didn't care. here was a man who has been put in a position where he's supposed to protect and serve, and not only did he not protect and serve, he even impeded the ability for anybody else to provide help. >> i think the most significant thing when prosecutors came to cross examine dr. fowler was
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hammering him on the fact that george floyd did not receive medical attention at the scene from the police officers. >> are you critical of the fact he wasn't given immediate emergency care when he went into cardiac arrest? >> yeah, as a physician i would agree. >> as the trial winds down, there's really only one key question left -- will derek chauvin take the stand in his own defense? >> this is the moment everyone had been waiting for, to see whether the former officer was going to take the stand and tell the jury what happened that day. >> derek chauvin pulls down his mask, he's holding a microphone, and for the first time, we're hearing his voice aloud in front of the judge. >> and have you made a decision today whether you intend to testify or whether you intend to evoke your fifth amendment privilege? >> i will invoke my fifth amendment privilege today. >> you know, the judge gives an instruction that you can't hold it against the defendant that he
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didn't take the stand. i think jurors take that to heart, but i also think this is the kind of case that's all about his state of mind. they want to know, what were you thinking? >> weir just moments away now from closing arguments in the trial of former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin. >> when you review the entirety of the evidence, when you review the law as written, the state has failed to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. >> when somebody's saying, i cannot breathe and they're passed out and you're aware they don't even have a pulse, even a 9-year-old little girl knows it, get off him. that's all you need to know. >> in any criminal case, the stakes are high for a jury, but in this case, the verdict could have repercussions not just
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chauvin! >> guilty! >> chauvin! >> guilty! during your deliberations, you must not let bias, prejudice, passion, sympathy, or public opinion influence your decision. >> judge cahill's instructions to the jury, that's kind of unique, because it was as if he was trying to get them to think about the outside world and instead focus on the job they were supposed to do. >> it's really hard to think that these jurors don't understand how historic it is, so in some ways it's going to way on them. >> as we waited to see what would happen, i felt anxiety. anxiety for our country, i think anxiety as a woman of color, wondering if we're just going to recognize humanity. >> all right, we are in recess until we hear from the jury.
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>> the responsibility now in the hands of the jury. >> the jurors are going to be able to deliberate until 7:30 p.m. central time. >> the jury calling it a night after four hours of deliberations. >> they'll be holed up in hotel rooms, not watching, reading or listening to any news. >> the city of minneapolis and the nation bracing for a verdict. >> overnight, protests on the streets of minneapolis. >> the national guard deployed and the governor declaring a state of emergency in anticipation of a verdict. >> george floyd's family at a hotel near the courthouse and back in their hometown of houston were all watching and waiting for the verdict. the one family member inside the courtroom, george floyd's brother, philonise floyd. >> before i even came in the courtroom i was pacing back and forth, back and forth. >> and then around 2:30 p.m. central time, after just nine
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hours and 44 minutes of deliberation, we hear that they have a verdict. >> good afternoon we're coming on the air at this hour because a verdict has been reached in the trial of former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin. >> we find out there's verdict, and immediately outside of the courthouse people start to show up. le. >> hurry up, they're about to read the verdict! >> all right, please be seated. members of the jury, i understand you have a verdict. we, the jury in the above entitled matter as to count one, second-degree murder while committing a felony, guilty. same caption, verdict count two, find the defendant guilty. same caption, verdict count three. find the defendant guilty. >> and the crowd really erupts. [ cheering ]
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>> let the healing work begin! >> when that verdict was read, people all over the country and all over the world were jumping for joy. >> say his name! >> george floyd! >> say his name! >> george floyd! >> they were kneeling in relief. it was like an exhale that you heard worldwide. >> thank you. i looked and i watched them put his hands behind his back and i was like, he had it a lot easier than my brother, but it was accountability. >> to see him handcuffed walking out of that courthouse like my brother was handcuffed, that showed me he had no more power. >> derek chauvin was convicted on all three counts, meaning he is just going to be sentenced to second-degree murder because
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that's the highest charge. he faces up to 40 years. as for the three other officers involved, they have been charged with aiding and abetting chauvin in floyd's death and all have plead not guilty. >> law enforcement by and large saw the same thing that this jury saw, the same thing that the floyd family saw, and that was a murder. >> police chiefs and high-ranking police officers in support of the verdict.t - >> reporter: the minneapolis police chief who took the witness stand and testified against derek chauvin, he made it clear, he said he respects the process and respects the decision that the jury had handed down. >> i would not call today's verdict justice, however. it is accountability. >> in the moments right after getting that verdict the family got a call from president biden. >> i think of gianna's comment,
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my dad's going to change the world, is going start now. you're incredible, an incredible family. >> i think for the president of the united states to acknowledge this kind of pain, this kind of trauma systemic racism, i think that's got to be huge, not just for the floyd family but for so many people in this country who have not felt heard, have not felt noticed. >> no one should be above the law. and today's verdict sends that message. but it's not enough. it can't stop here. >> today we feel a sigh of relief. still, it cannot take away the pain. a measure of justice isn't the same as equal justice.
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>> georgie was one of the most incredible people to walk this earth. his spirit, his faith, his love, his protection, his strength, his endurance, his ideology, how much he loved his family, how much he loves his kids. i wish they would know the georgie that i knew. the videos, the road trips. [ laughs ] the laughing and playing. the dreams and goals and ambitions he had. he just wanted to be a good dad. >> when you said, daddy changed the world. >> mm-hmm.
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for all the black daddies in the world. >> one day it's going to be and god. you're going up or you're going down. that's going to be it. >> i think the george floyd case, the derek chauvin case has been a wake-up call for america. maybe the next time when the derek chauvin of the worlds meet the george floyds of the world, both men will get to go home to their families alive. >> this is the most significant trial on race relations in this country in the last half century. that's how important this case is. but does this mean we're going to keep talking about race and justice and policing in terms of what happened before george floyd's death and what happened after george floyd's death? in my opinion, no. not until there's a real push to change the laws. ♪ starting a war screaming peace at the same time ♪ ♪ all the corruption, injustice the same crimes ♪ ♪ always a problem if we do or
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don't fight ♪ ♪ and we die, same right ♪ >> let's get the ball rolling. we've made step one. let's take a few more. >> enough is enough! >> this is our country's racial reckoning. >> the change that happened was saying, no more, we're done. ♪ i can't breathe ♪ ♪ you're taking your life from me ♪ ♪ i can't breathe ♪ ♪ will anyone fight for me? ♪ >> this verdict is a form of accountability, the same accountability that we received here can be received for all these cases. but you certainly can't exhale. this is our time we have to put our foot on the gas and push forward. >> say his name! >> george floyd! >> these were family members, loved ones. >> it is george floyd, but it is eric garner, breonna taylor.
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>> daunte wright. >> we still say emmett till. we still say trayvon martin. i think we'll say george floyd, and it will have a meaning as a civil rights moment. and it's tragic, isn't it? because emmett till should have had a full life. but in death, that was a launch of a movement. and so, too, with george floyd. >> and i want his heart to be filled up with joy in this. >> mm. >> and i'm going fill his whole name up in the world. >> of course this verdict all part of a flash point in our national conversation on race and policing in america, and it's far from the last word on george floyd's death. >> that's right, the three other former minneapolis officers who were there at the scene are scheduled to go on trial together in august and of course
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abc news will be right there covering it. >> that is "20/20" for tonight. thank you for watching. i'm david muir. >> i'm amy robach. for all of us here at abc news, good night.
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