Derek Chauvin’s lawyer Eric Nelson has filed a motion requesting a new trial for his client after alleged jury misconduct.
In the motion, which follows just weeks after the former Minnesota cop was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd, Nelson argues that Chauvin was “deprived of a fair trial” due to abuse of discretion.
“The Court abused its discretion when it denied Defendant’s motion for a change of venue … in violation of Mr. Chauvin’s constitutional rights to a due process and a fair trial,” the attorney wrote in the papers filed at the Hennepin County District Court.
Nelson went on to argue that “publicity during the proceedings threaten[ed] the fairness of the trial” as he insisted that the witnesses brought on by the defense were intimidated.
“Such publicity included post-testimony, but pre-deliberation, intimidation of the defense’s expert witnesses, from which the jury was not insulated,” the motion adds.
“Not only did such acts escalate the potential for prejudice in these proceedings, they may result in a far-reaching chilling effect on the defendant’s ability to procure expert witnesses – especially in high-profile cases, such as those of Mr. Chauvin’s codefendants – to testify on their behalf.”
Among other allegations, Nelson claimed some jurors may have been pressured into making an unwanted decision due to fear of potential retribution.
Allegations of jury misconduct on multiple grounds come shortly after it was also revealed that one of the jurors, Brandon Mitchell, participated in the March on Washington last August.
Mitchell was spotted wearing a Black Lives Matter hat and a T-shirt with ‘GET YOUR KNEE OFF OUR NECKS’ during the protest.
Though he has since admitted attending the march, he defended his decision saying the protest wasn’t a George Floyd commemoration or a rally against the police.
It has since also come to light that Mitchell answered ‘NO’ when it came to questions about demonstrations that potential jurors were asked before the jury was selected.
What are your thoughts on this matter? Let us know in the comments and don’t forget to SHARE this post with your family and friends. For more news and stories, follow us on Facebook!