Police Disperse Crowd in Third Night of Daunte Wright Protest

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Demonstrators gathered outside the police station in Brooklyn Center, Minn., for the third consecutive night on Tuesday to protest the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright.

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Protests Continue in Minnesota

Protesters gathered for a third day outside the police station in Brooklyn Center, Minn., after a white officer fatally shot Duante Wright, a Black man, during a traffic stop on Sunday.

Now he finally got a job for.

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Protesters gathered for a third day outside the police station in Brooklyn Center, Minn., after a white officer fatally shot Duante Wright, a Black man, during a traffic stop on Sunday.CreditCredit…Victor J. Blue for The New York Times

Law enforcement fired projectiles into a crowd of hundreds outside the Brooklyn Center police station after declaring the protest unlawful on Tuesday, the third consecutive night of demonstrations after an officer fatally shot Daunte Wright.

For about 45 minutes, Minnesota State Patrol officers intermittently ordered people to leave over a loudspeaker, specifically demanding that reporters leave the scene. Police officers and National Guard troops were lined up in front of the police station as protesters chanted and threw full water bottles.

Then, just after 9:30 p.m., State Patrol officers fired several flash bangs into the air and rushed a group of people at the front of the crowd who had been shielding themselves from police projectiles with umbrellas. Law enforcement had fired chemical spray, flash bangs and paintballs to disperse the crowd.

The efforts pushed a significant number of people out of the area, and the police appeared to detain several people as a line of Patrol officers stood guard.

Alyah Jacobson, 21, and Dimitri Pickett, 22, were among the protesters who left the area surrounding the police station before debating whether to regroup elsewhere.

The couple had driven in from the St. Paul suburb of Mahtomedi and said they were not deterred by the police response. “I didn’t feel threatened, and I’m not scared. I’ll come back,” Ms. Jacobson said. She added, of their 2-year-old daughter, “I’m not going to let her grow up in this kind of world.”

Humvees and National Guard vehicles circled neighborhood streets before the start of a 10 p.m. curfew in Brooklyn Center that also applied in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Dozens of people were arrested on Monday for violating an earlier curfew.

Downtown Minneapolis was quiet on Tuesday.
Credit…Jenn Ackerman for The New York Times

The cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul set another overnight curfew on Tuesday as local officials anticipated a third night of protests demanding justice after Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, was shot by the police on Sunday during a traffic stop.

Movement will be restricted in the Twin Cities from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. The restrictions are less stringent than the ones Gov. Tim Walz set for three counties on Monday night, when the curfew went into effect at 7 p.m. Dozens of protesters who defied the curfew and confronted the police were arrested on Monday.

Local officials have been increasing security in Minneapolis and its suburbs since the shooting of Mr. Wright on Sunday in Brooklyn Center and as the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who is charged in George Floyd’s death, nears its end. On Tuesday, additional fencing, barriers and plywood were erected in downtown Minneapolis to protect buildings around the site of Mr. Chauvin’s trial.

Kim Potter, the police officer who shot Mr. Wright, resigned on Tuesday, as did the police chief of Brooklyn Center, Tim Gannon.

A still image from body camera video footage of George Floyd’s arrest was shown in court on Tuesday.
Credit…Still image, via Court TV

For the first time in the trial of the former police officer Derek Chauvin, a witness explicitly defended his actions when he knelt on George Floyd for nine and a half minutes.

Barry Brodd, an expert on the use of force who was called to testify by the defense, said on Tuesday that Mr. Chauvin had been justified in his actions, and that he did not consider the restraint that Mr. Chauvin used — keeping Mr. Floyd pinned under his knee while handcuffed and facedown on the street — a use of force. (Mr. Brodd later acknowledged that the restraint did qualify as a use of force under the policies of the Minneapolis Police Department.)

Mr. Brodd’s testimony contradicted that of numerous witnesses who were called by the prosecution, including other use-of-force experts and the chief of the Minneapolis Police Department.

The defense also called several other witnesses, including a woman who was in the car with Mr. Floyd just before police officers arrived.

As the defense called its witnesses to the stand, officials in Minnesota scrambled to deal with the fallout from the fatal shooting of a Black man by a police officer in suburban Minneapolis over the weekend. The officer who fired the fatal shot, as well as the police chief for Brooklyn Center, the suburb where the shooting happened, both resigned on Tuesday.

Here are key takeaways from Day 12 of the trial.

  • Mr. Brodd said that the officers who arrested Mr. Floyd had acted appropriately every step of the way. “I felt that Derek Chauvin was justified, and was acting with objective reasonableness, following Minneapolis Police Department policy and current standards of law enforcement, in his interactions with Mr. Floyd,” he said. Mr. Brodd also said that Mr. Chauvin’s actions did not qualify as a use of force at all, and that the fact that Mr. Floyd died did not mean Mr. Chauvin had used “deadly force.” He compared the situation to that of a police officer who uses a Taser, only to have the suspect fall back, hit their head and die. Though the suspect died, the initial use of force could still be reasonable, he said. Mr. Brodd also said the prone position in which Mr. Floyd was kept for nine and a half minutes was safe, did not typically hurt suspects and was an accepted way to control someone during an arrest.

Credit…Still image, via Court TV
  • During cross-examination, Mr. Brodd acknowledged that Mr. Chauvin’s restraint qualified as a use of force under the policies of the Minneapolis Police Department, though he had previously said it was not a use of force. In addition, he had initially said that the prone position in which Mr. Floyd was placed was unlikely to hurt suspects. During cross-examination, though, a prosecutor played body camera footage from the arrest which captured Mr. Floyd explicitly saying, “Everything hurts,” along with other exclamations of pain. Mr. Brodd said that he had heard these exclamations during his review of the tapes, but that he didn’t “note it.”

  • The prosecution and Mr. Brodd appeared to view the videos of the arrest from completely different perspectives. On several points, common ground was hard to find. For example, when watching video of Mr. Floyd pinned to the ground, Mr. Brodd said he thought that Mr. Floyd was resisting. The prosecutor, though, said Mr. Floyd was “writhing on the ground because he can’t breathe.”

  • Jurors also heard from a woman who was with Mr. Floyd just before police officers approached his vehicle, and they saw new body camera footage from Peter Chang, an employee of the Minneapolis Park Police and a licensed peace officer who responded to the scene of the arrest. Both witnesses provided new insight on Mr. Floyd’s condition before he was taken to a police cruiser and eventually pinned to the ground.

Credit…Still image, via Court TV
  • The woman, Shawanda Hill, said Mr. Floyd was “happy, normal, talking, alert” while in the Cup Foods convenience store before he was arrested. Ms. Hill said that Mr. Floyd had offered to give her a ride home, and they went to a vehicle together. Mr. Floyd then fell asleep while she took a phone call in the vehicle, she said. Other than being tired, Ms. Hill said, Mr. Floyd seemed normal, never complaining of shortness of breath or chest pains; the defense has suggested that Mr. Floyd died of complications from drug use and a heart condition.

  • In Mr. Chang’s body camera footage, Mr. Floyd can be seen handcuffed and sitting on the street as a police officer asked him for his name and birthday. Mr. Floyd answered the officer coherently and did not try to flee. The footage could benefit the prosecution, which has argued that the officers, particularly Mr. Chauvin, acted unreasonably during what should have been a routine interaction.

Judge Peter Cahill sends the jury home for the evening, but says the lawyers will stay behind to discuss some legal matters. We can expect to hear from the defense’s medical experts as soon as tomorrow. Most experts say the defense’s best case for creating reasonable doubt is on cause of death.

Steve Schleicher, a prosecutor, asks Barry Brodd, a defense expert, if he looked at the autopsy photos of George Floyd. He said he did not. Schleicher mentions the bruises on Floyd’s face, again attacking Brodd’s earlier statement that Chauvin’s restraint didn’t qualify as a use of force because Floyd wasn’t in pain.

Barry Brodd, the defense expert, testifies under cross-examination that he listened to the videos of George Floyd expressing pain while restrained by Derek Chauvin, but says he didn’t “note it.” He agreed with a prosecutor that the premise of his opinion that Chauvin was not using force rested on the assertion that Floyd was not in pain. So Brodd is saying in essence that he did not believe Floyd’s cries of pain were genuine.

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Use-of Force Expert Says Chauvin’s Actions Were Justified

Barry Brodd, a former police officer and use-of-force expert, testified on Tuesday that Derek Chauvin’s actions during the arrest of George Floyd were justified by Mr. Floyd’s resistance.

Just briefly, overview your opinions in this particular case. 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. In your opinion, was this a use of deadly force? It was not. And in your view of that use of force, what is your perspective on that? That Mr. Floyd’s level of resistance was — it was objectively reasonable for those officers to do the techniques that they were doing. I felt that that level of resistance exhibited by Mr. Floyd justified the officers in higher levels of use of force that they chose not to select. In a situation where we have here, where you’re actually physically on top of someone, in a position which, based on your training and based on your experience, based on your knowledge, could cause positional asphyxia — that’s a different context, correct? Yes. And in that context, it would — a reasonable police officer would at least acknowledge and consider the possibility that what they’re doing is causing a problem, wouldn’t they? Where you would interpret what Mr. Floyd is doing while he’s making his statements, and it appeared to me with that video that he was still struggling. Struggling or writhing? I don’t know the difference. Well, would a reasonable police officer on the scene consider whether somebody is actively resisting, or writhing on the ground because they can’t breathe? I think it’d be reasonable for the officer to take what Mr. Floyd had been doing prior to that and still consider that he was struggling.

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Barry Brodd, a former police officer and use-of-force expert, testified on Tuesday that Derek Chauvin’s actions during the arrest of George Floyd were justified by Mr. Floyd’s resistance.CreditCredit…Still image, via Court TV

Barry Brodd, a former police officer and use-of-force expert, testified for the defense that Derek Chauvin’s use of force against George Floyd was justified — countering two weeks of prosecution witnesses who argued the opposite.

“I felt that Derek Chauvin was justified, and was acting with objective reasonableness, following Minneapolis Police Department policy and current standards of law enforcement, in his interactions with Mr. Floyd,” he said.

Mr. Brodd, who has nearly 30 years of law enforcement experience and specializes in police and civilian defense cases, referenced Graham v. Connor, a 1989 Supreme Court case in which the justices ruled that an officer’s use of force must be “objectively reasonable,” but that “police officers are often forced to make split-second judgments — in circumstances that are tense, uncertain and rapidly evolving — about the amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation.”

Officers must respond to imminent threats, Mr. Brodd said, which require a police officer to have a “reasonable fear that somebody is going to strike you, stab you, shoot you.”

To judge use-of-force cases, Mr. Brodd said he considered whether an officer had justification to detain a person, how the person responded to the officer — with compliance or varying degrees of resistance — and whether the officer’s use of force correlated with the level of resistance.

Mr. Brodd said he agreed with the defense that Mr. Floyd’s death did not qualify as a use of deadly force. He said that Mr. Chauvin’s use of force was appropriate for the level of resistance from Mr. Floyd, and that the officers would have been justified in using even more force.

“Police officers don’t have to fight fair,” he said. “They’re allowed to overcome your resistance by going up a level.”

Mr. Brodd said that officers had used force when they pulled Mr. Floyd from the police car and onto the ground, but that he did not consider keeping Mr. Floyd in a prone position, with his wrists handcuffed behind his back, to be a use of force. When questioned later by the prosecution, he amended this claim, saying the position and the officers on top of Mr. Floyd could have caused him pain and therefore qualified as use of force.

The prosecution showed video footage of Mr. Floyd telling officers, “Everything hurts.”

The question of whether the officers should have moved Mr. Floyd onto his side to enable him to breathe easier was also at the center of Mr. Brodd’s testimony.

While in the prone position, Mr. Floyd said repeatedly that he could not breathe. Though Mr. Chauvin had been trained to move suspects onto their side to prevent “positional asphyxia,” or difficulty breathing while handcuffed in a prone position, Mr. Brodd said they were justified in keeping Mr. Floyd on his stomach even after he stopped resisting.

He argued that it would have been difficult to move Mr. Floyd onto his side because he was lying up against the police car, there were other vehicles driving on the street, and bystanders were distracting officers.

“Those were relatively valid reasons to keep him in the prone,” he said, adding that if someone is shouting, he believes they can breathe well enough — a claim that medical experts previously testified is not always a good indication of whether a person is getting enough oxygen.

During cross-examination, Mr. Brodd agreed with the prosecution that use of force must be reasonable throughout an interaction, and should escalate or diminish based on how actively a suspect is resisting. A reasonable police officer, Mr. Brodd agreed, would take into account whether a suspect had stopped breathing or no longer had a pulse.

We’re back from break, and in another tactic to rebut the defense’s contention that the crowd distracted Derek Chauvin as he kneeled on George Floyd, the prosecution plays body camera footage showing that Floyd was already on the ground saying that he couldn’t breathe before the bystanders gathered. Barry Brodd, the defense use-of-force expert being cross-examined, acknowledges that a reasonable officer wouldn’t be distracted at that point.

Brodd had said earlier that Chauvin’s restraint of Floyd was not a use of force, partly because he wasn’t inflicting any pain. The prosecution shows him video of Floyd saying, “Everything hurts,” and asking for water.

Just before the court’s afternoon break, the state shows video of George Floyd struggling with the officers arresting him. Barry Brodd, the defense expert, characterized it as Floyd actively resisting the officers as they tried to restrain him. The prosecutor asks if Floyd was actually “writhing on the ground because he can’t breathe,” illustrating the different interpretations of the same event that the jury will have to choose between.

The prosecution is taking a new angle to rebut the defense’s argument that the crowd of bystanders distracted Derek Chauvin while he was restraining George Floyd and posed a threat to him. Barry Brodd, the defense expert, acknowledges that whatever the crowd was doing would not be a justification for directing force at Floyd.

In his cross-examination, Steve Schleicher, the prosecutor, effectively dismantles Barry Brodd’s testimony that what Derek Chauvin did to George Floyd wasn’t even a use of force. He gets Brodd, the defense expert, to admit that Chauvin’s actions did not conform with Minneapolis Police Department policy, and that a reasonable officer would abide by his department’s policies.

After a parade of prosecution witnesses who said that what Derek Chauvin did to George Floyd was deadly force — illegal and against police policy — the defense expert, Barry Brodd, says that putting Floyd in a prone position while handcuffed did not even qualify as a use of force.

On cross examination, the prosecution shows a picture of Chauvin kneeling on Floyd — which Brodd previously said was not a use of force — and asks if that position could inflict pain. He says it could. That undermines what he had just told the defense lawyer, when he said it wasn’t a use of force because Floyd felt no pain.

Derek Chauvin on Tuesday. If he takes the stand, he could open himself up to a damaging cross-examination.
Credit…Still image, via Court TV

With the defense beginning to present its case Tuesday, one big question is whether Derek Chauvin will take the stand.

The jury undoubtedly wants to hear what Mr. Chauvin, a 19-year veteran of the Minneapolis police force, was thinking as he restrained George Floyd for more than nine minutes. But testifying poses risks for him: He could put jurors off or open himself up to a damaging cross-examination.

During jury selection, Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric J. Nelson, repeatedly stressed that jurors could not hold it against the former officer if he did not testify.

Mr. Chauvin, 45, faces three charges: second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Barry Brodd, the defense expert, is saying that sometimes it’s safer for a police officer to place a suspect in the prone position, as Derek Chauvin did with George Floyd. Yesterday I was talking with Cyril Wecht, the nationally known forensic pathologist, who told me that officers have been taught about the dangers of that position for at least a decade.

Barry Brodd, the defense use-of-force expert, laid the foundation for his analysis of Derek Chauvin’s actions by saying there was justification for George Floyd’s arrest. Many other experts have said Chauvin’s use of force was unreasonable because what Floyd was accused of doing was so minor — passing a fake $20 bill.

Brodd says suspects on drugs sometimes “don’t feel pain” and can have “superhuman strength.” These statements have often been heard in past police brutality cases when officers were charged with killing Black men.

Barry Brodd, a former police officer and expert on the use of force, testified for the defense Tuesday that Derek Chauvin was following his police training when he knelt on George Floyd’s neck while trying to arrest him last May.

I felt that Derek Chauvin was justified, and was acting with objective reasonableness, following Minneapolis police department policy and current standards of law enforcement, in his interactions with Mr. Floyd.

Barry Brodd refers to a tactic he has taught, called “verbal judo,” which he said was developed after the Rodney King case to teach officers to use “verbal skills” to deal with a suspect who is not complying with police orders.

The defense has called Barry Brodd, a former police officer and use-of-force expert, who specializes in police and civilian defense cases, to the stand.

Mr. Brodd, who has nearly 30 years of law-enforcement experience, previously testified in another highly publicized trial in which a white police officer was accused of using excessive force against a Black teenager.

In 2018, Mr. Brodd testified on behalf of Jason Van Dyke, a Chicago police officer who shot and killed 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, in 2014. Mr. Van Dyke shot Laquan, who was walking down the street while holding a knife, 16 times. He was convicted of murder in 2018.

In that trial, Mr. Brodd testified that Mr. Van Dyke’s use of force was justified. To prove his point, he reenacted the circumstances of the shooting for the jury, using a tape measure to stand 13 feet from the defense attorney — the distance between Laquan and Mr. Van Dyke when the officer first shot him.

Mr. Brodd then rushed at the defense attorney while wielding a plastic knife and pretended to stab him multiple times.

We are back from lunch, and the defense has called Barry Brodd, a use-of-force expert who specializes in police and civilian defense cases.

Notably, Brodd, who was a law enforcement officer for decades, appeared as an expert witness for the defense of Jason Van Dyke, the Chicago police officer convicted of murder for shooting and killing 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in 2014. Brodd testified that the use of force was justified.

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Officer Who Fatally Shot Daunte Wright Resigns

Mike Elliott, the mayor of Brooklyn Center, Minn., announced on Tuesday that Kim Potter, the police officer who shot and killed Daunte Wright, along with the city’s police chief, Tim Gannon, had both resigned.

As of this morning, we have the resignation, we have received a resignation letter from Officer Kim Potter. And in addition to that, we have also received a letter of resignation from the police chief. So with the police chief’s resignation, we’re going to appoint two of our senior commanders to play critical leadership roles in leading the department through this crisis. Commander Tony Gruenig is going to be the acting chief. And Commander Garett Flesland is going to assist the chief with regards to handling this current crisis.

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Mike Elliott, the mayor of Brooklyn Center, Minn., announced on Tuesday that Kim Potter, the police officer who shot and killed Daunte Wright, along with the city’s police chief, Tim Gannon, had both resigned.CreditCredit…Bruce Bisping/Star Tribune, via Getty Images, Stephen Maturen, via Getty Images

Kim Potter, the police officer in Brooklyn Center, Minn., who fatally shot Daunte Wright on Sunday, has resigned from the Police Department, her union said in a statement on Tuesday.

The city’s police chief, Tim Gannon, also announced that he was departing.

In a letter that Ms. Potter sent to city officials on Tuesday, she said she was resigning immediately, the union said.

“I have loved every minute of being a police officer and serving this community to the best of my ability, but I believe it is in the best interest of the community, the department and my fellow officers if I resign immediately,” she wrote.

The union, Law Enforcement Labor Services, represents more than 6,400 members throughout Minnesota.

Ms. Potter, 48, had been an officer with the Brooklyn Center Police Department for 26 years. She was first licensed as a police officer in Minnesota in 1995, and graduated from Saint Mary’s College in Winona, Minn., in 1994 with a criminal justice major, school officials said.

Until her resignation, she had been placed on administrative leave within the department after shooting and killing Mr. Wright, 20. In a news conference on Monday, Chief Gannon said he believed from watching Ms. Potter’s body camera video that she was attempting to use a Taser on Mr. Wright and pulled her firearm instead, killing him.

Downtown Minneapolis was quiet on Tuesday as the trail for former police officer Derek Chauvin continued.
Credit…Jenn Ackerman for The New York Times

Victoria Knott, a criminal defense lawyer, gestured toward the empty streets in downtown Minneapolis on Tuesday, just before the start of the 12th day of the Derek Chauvin trial. There was barely any traffic, and nearly every building was protected with fencing and plywood.

A fresh round of protests had erupted in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center on Monday night after a 20-year-old Black man, Daunte Wright, was shot by a police officer about 10 miles away on Sunday.

“We have seen this over and over again,” Ms. Knott, 34, said about the shooting of Mr. Wright. “This is exhausting. You can see how the city feels right now: No one wants to be here. This is taking a toll.”

Light flurries fell downtown as construction workers placed new plywood on the windows of the Minneapolis Grain Exchange. The area appeared deserted, with mostly essential workers heading into nearby office buildings.

A block away from where Ms. Knott was preparing to visit her clients, the public plaza in front of the federal courthouse, full of dozens of benches and bonsai-style trees, was completely cut off by almost eight-foot-tall metal fencing. The sound of church bells broke what little noise there was of construction crews.

Matthew Ellis, a 42-year-old drug and alcohol counselor, said that he felt some hope last year after George Floyd’s death fueled a national conversation about policing, but that it was dashed by Mr. Wright’s death.

“It feels like we are heading into the summer just like we were last year,” he said a block from the federal courthouse. “It’s a somber mood in the city. I think we are stuck.”

After brief testimony from Officer Nicole Mackenzie on the concept of excited delirium and how Minneapolis police officers are trained to deal with it, the court has broken for lunch.

In newly shown footage, from the body camera of Officer Peter Chang of the Minneapolis Park Police, George Floyd is seen handcuffed and sitting on the street near a Chinese restaurant.
Credit…Still image, via Court TV

In new body camera footage shown to jurors on Tuesday in the trial of Derek Chauvin, George Floyd is seen handcuffed and sitting on the street near a Chinese restaurant, giving his name and birth date to one of the first police officers who arrived at Cup Foods after a clerk called to report that Mr. Floyd had used a fake $20 bill to buy cigarettes.

The footage was from the body camera of Peter Chang, a Minneapolis Park Police officer who arrived to back up the two rookie officers who first responded to the scene, before Mr. Chauvin and his partner arrived. Officer Chang’s testimony was the first in the trial from an officer who responded to the incident before Mr. Floyd had died.

The new footage was shown on the first day of testimony presented by Eric J. Nelson, the lawyer for Derek Chauvin, and provided a new glimpse of events that day, mostly from the perspective of two of Mr. Floyd’s companions: Morries Lester Hall and Shawanda Hill. As the officers struggled with Mr. Floyd across the street, Mr. Chang remained behind and watched Mr. Hall and Ms. Hill, who seemed to have no idea about the gravity of what was unfolding.

On the video, Mr. Chang is heard telling Mr. Floyd’s friends that if they don’t have warrants out for their arrest, they can go “when all this is settled.” At one point, apparently after Mr. Floyd was taken away in the ambulance, Mr. Hall and Ms. Hill were told that their friend had been taken to the hospital. “What happened to him?” Ms. Hill frantically asked.

During Mr. Chang’s testimony before the body camera video was shown, Mr. Nelson asked about one of the key points of his defense: that the group of vocal bystanders who gathered around the officers as they struggled on the ground with Mr. Floyd became increasingly angry and represented a threat to the officers. “They were very aggressive,” Mr. Chang agreed.

Yet on cross-examination by Matthew Frank, a prosecutor, Mr. Chang seemed to undercut the defense’s point about the angry crowd. Mr. Chang said that while he remained across the street to watch Mr. Floyd’s friends, he assumed the officers struggling with Mr. Floyd had things under control and said they did not ask for help.

He also said that when he first arrived on the scene, Mr. Floyd was peaceful and responding to officers, another point that the state made in its cross-examination, an attempt to highlight that officers had already subdued Mr. Floyd — and drive home their argument to the jury that no more force was necessary to arrest him.

Throughout the trial the term “excited delirium” has come up, with the prosecution going out of its way to pre-empt any argument by the defense that George Floyd was experiencing it.

Body camera footage captured one of the officers at the scene saying that he was “concerned about excited delirium or whatever.” Police officers receive training on excited delirium even though it has often been dismissed as pseudoscience.

There is no generally accepted definition of excited delirium, according to a 2018 review of the scientific literature, but the term is used to describe someone who becomes distressed or aggressive from a mental illness or the use of stimulants like cocaine. Critics say it is not a real medical condition but simply an excuse for deaths in police custody.

It is not included in the International Classification of Diseases or the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders but has been recognized by the National Association of Medical Examiners and the American College of Emergency Physicians.

According to a report by the Brookings Institution, the term is disproportionately applied to Black people and was first used in 1985 to explain a series of sudden deaths in cocaine users, occurring primarily while in police custody, and again to explain the deaths of 32 Black women in Miami in the 1980s, who were later determined to have been asphyxiated by a serial killer.

On the stand on Monday, Dr. Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, who tried to resuscitate Mr. Floyd in the emergency room and pronounced him dead, said he had considered but ultimately rejected excited delirium as a contributing factor in his death, conceding that it was a “controversial diagnosis.”

There was no report that Mr. Floyd had ever been “very sweaty” or “extremely agitated,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of cases of mental health crises or drug use leading to severe agitated states,” he said. “That is almost always reported by paramedics, and so the absence of that information was telling.”

We are back after a break, and the defense has called Officer Nicole Mackenzie, the medical support coordinator for the Minneapolis Police Department who has already testified for the prosecution. Eric Nelson, Derek Chauvin’s lawyer, wants to ask her questions about “excited delirium,” a contested condition often cited in police killings.

One problem for the defense is that Floyd did not exhibit the signs of excited delirium. Office Nicole Mackenzie is explaining another: that officers are taught that people with excited delirium are vulnerable to cardiac arrest.

We are back after a break, and the defense has called Officer Nicole Mackenzie, the medical support coordinator for the Minneapolis Police Department who has already testified for the prosecution. Eric Nelson, Derek Chauvin’s lawyer, wants to ask her questions about “excited delirium,” a contested condition ofen cited in police killings.

Officer Mackenzie is here to explain what Minneapolis Police Department officers are taught about excited delirium. One of the officers involved in Floyd’s arrest, Thomas Lane, can be heard on body camera video saying he was concerned that Floyd was suffering from the condition. The signs are said to include removal of clothing, profuse sweating, superhuman strength and extreme agitation. Mackenzie is saying that officers are taught that someone with excited delirium is “unstoppable.”

Nicole MacKenzie, the medical support coordinator for the Minneapolis Police Department, returned to the witness stand on Tuesday for the defense, after testifying for the prosecution last week. 
Credit…Still image, via Court TV

Nicole Mackenzie, the medical support coordinator for the Minneapolis Police Department, returned to the witness stand Tuesday for the defense after testifying for the prosecution last week.

During Officer Mackenzie’s testimony, the defense suggested that Floyd was suffering from excited delirium, which is sometimes cited as a fatal condition to explain deaths in police custody. Excited delirium is controversial and not broadly recognized as a diagnosis.

When Officer Mackenzie testified for the state last week, she said that people experiencing excited delirium could exhibit “superhuman strength” because they do not feel normal levels of pain.

She also agreed with Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer that a police officer could mistake gasping for air with breathing and that a hostile group of bystanders could make it more likely for a police officer to miss signs that a detainee was in distress.

Officer Mackenzie said it could be “incredibly difficult” to provide medical treatment in front of a loud crowd, even if they were not interfering physically.

“If you had a very hostile or volatile crowd — it sounds unreasonable — but bystanders do occasionally attack E.M.S. crews,” she testified.

In court, the defense presented training materials, used by the police department, that list pre-existing factors for excited delirium as cardiovascular disease, drug use and mental health issues. Much of the trial has centered on the condition of Mr. Floyd’s heart and his known drug use, and whether those two factors played a role in his death.

Signs of excited delirium include clothing removal, violence, increased strength, confusion or resistance to responding to commands, Officer Mackenzie said. The onset of signs can be abrupt, she added, and require additional resources, including emergency medical services.

Officer Mackenzie agreed with the defense that an officer should “control” someone with excited delirium, which might include the use of physical force, but said on cross-examination that officers are also trained to put people in the recovery position to assist with breathing and begin life saving measures if they become unresponsive.

During cross-examination by the prosecution, Peter Chang, the Minneapolis Park Police officer who responded to the scene of George Floyd’s arrest and detained the friends who were in the car with Floyd, says the officers restraining Floyd never called for his help or further backup. He has left the stand, and the court is taking a short break to prepare for the next defense witness.

On Officer Chang’s body camera video, as the ambulance leaves with George Floyd’s body, his friends step up their requests to take him his cell phone, which was inside his car. “He’s already gone,” Chang tells them. “He doesn’t need his phone.”

Officer Chang says that when he arrived at the scene of George Floyd’s arrest, the other officers told him to watch Floyd’s car. We think this is the first time Chang’s body camera video has been made public. It shows the two passengers who were with Floyd, Shawanda Hill and Morries Hall, as they hear a crowd reacting to Floyd being restrained across the street.

On the body camera video, Chang can be heard telling Floyd’s friends that if they don’t have any warrants for their arrest, they can go “when all this is settled.” Hall and Hill are being very compliant. Hall seems to ask permission before he opens his backpack and before he goes to the car to get a mask.

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Shawanda Hill, George Floyd’s Associate, Testifies in Derek Chauvin Trial

Shawanda Hill, an associate of George Floyd’s who was sitting in the back seat of the car when Mr. Floyd was arrested, testified about his demeanor before the arrest.

“When I tried to wake him up, he woke up the second time, I said, ‘Floyd, the police is here. It’s about the $20 bill wasn’t real.’ I kept saying, ‘Baby, get up, the police.’ So he looked, and we looked to the right and he had the police. He tapped on the window with a flashlight. And I’m like, ‘Floyd.’ So he turned back around again. ‘What, what, what?’ And I was like, ‘Baby, that’s the police. Open the door, roll down the window, whatever he told you to do.’ So he looked back and when he’d seen the man, the man had the gun at the window at — when we looked back to him. So he instantly grabbed the wheel and he was like, ‘Please, please don’t kill me. Please, please don’t shoot me. Don’t shoot me. What did I do? Just tell me what I did. Please don’t kill me.’” “During this time period, coming out from Cup Foods and being in the vehicle, did he complain of shortness of breath at all?” “No.” “Did he complain of chest pains at all?” “No.” “And other than being sleepy or nodding off a little bit, did he seem abnormal to you in any way?” “No, not at all.” “And did he seem startled when the officer pulled a gun on him?” “Very.”

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Shawanda Hill, an associate of George Floyd’s who was sitting in the back seat of the car when Mr. Floyd was arrested, testified about his demeanor before the arrest.CreditCredit…Still image, via Court TV

Shawanda Hill, an associate of George Floyd’s who was sitting in the back seat of the car when he was first approached by officers and arrested, testified for the defense on Tuesday, giving more insight into his demeanor before the arrest.

Ms. Hill said she ran into Mr. Floyd in Cup Foods, where he appeared “happy, normal, talking, alert,” she said. He offered to give her a ride home, so she went with him to the car and sat in the back seat.

Ms. Hill said she chatted for a few minutes with Mr. Floyd, and then took a phone call from her daughter, during which time Mr. Floyd fell asleep.

She said she tried to rouse him, and that he would “nod, do a gesture,” and then fall back asleep. He appeared to be asleep when the store clerk approached the car about the counterfeit $20 bill, she said.

When police officers approached the vehicle, Ms. Hill again tried to rouse Mr. Floyd.

“I kept telling him, ‘Baby get up,’” she said. The approaching officers, one with his gun already drawn, startled him, she said.

Ms. Hill told jurors Mr. Floyd’s behavior was normal, other than his being sleepy.

The defense has argued that Mr. Floyd’s drowsiness was a sign of drug use that may have contributed to his death. Prosecutors previously called several expert witnesses who denied that drugs caused Mr. Floyd’s death.

Officer Chang’s body camera footage shows George Floyd alive, handcuffed and sitting on the street, telling Officer Kueng his name and his birthdate. This is defense testimony, but here we see Floyd subdued and under control before he resisted being put in a squad car and officers pinned him to the street, which could potentially help the state’s case.

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Police Officer Testifies on ‘Aggressive’ Crowd During George Floyd Arrest

Peter Chang, a Minneapolis Park Police officer, said he was worried about the crowd watching George Floyd’s arrest. The defense has suggested that the crowd distracted Derek Chauvin, the former officer on trial for the killing of Mr. Floyd.

“Now, in terms of, as the crowd or the group of people were congregating around Squad 320, did you notice anything in terms of the tone or tenor of the voices of those people?” “They were very aggressive, aggressive towards the officers, yes.” “Did did the volume increase?” “Yes.” “And so how were you reacting? Were you splitting — how were you reacting to that?” “Yes, I was focused on car, but then it distracts me and I was concerned for the officers’ safety, too. So I just kept an eye on his officers and the car and individuals.” “But you knew that there were now four officers over at that scene, correct?” “Correct, yes.” “And so your main focus was on watching those passengers?” “Yes, in the car.” “And you assumed when you were doing that those four officers were OK over there because there were four of them, correct?” “Yes.” “And if they had radioed for help, you would have heard it over your radio?” “Yes.” “And they never radioed for help did they?” “No.”

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Peter Chang, a Minneapolis Park Police officer, said he was worried about the crowd watching George Floyd’s arrest. The defense has suggested that the crowd distracted Derek Chauvin, the former officer on trial for the killing of Mr. Floyd.CreditCredit…Still image, via Court TV

Peter Chang, an employee of Minneapolis Park Police and a licensed peace officer, testified Tuesday that the crowd watching George Floyd’s arrest last May made him nervous.

“They were very aggressive,” he said.

The defense has suggested that the crowd distracted Derek Chauvin, the arresting officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck and is now on trial for killing Mr. Floyd.

The defense played Mr. Chang’s body camera footage, which showed him looking up Mr. Floyd’s name on the computer in his police car after he arrived to help the arresting officers.

In a longer clip of the body camera footage, Mr. Chang appears to tell Shawanda Hill and Morries Hall, who gives a false name to Mr. Chang, to stay away from the car they had been sitting in with Mr. Floyd. In the video, Ms. Hill and Mr. Hall can be heard commenting on Mr. Floyd struggling with the police across the street.

“Stay put guys, you don’t want to be involved in all that,” Mr. Chang tells them.

Mr. Chang explained that he was pacing back and forth in the video because he was “concerned for the officers’ safety because of the crowd.”





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