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# Will Derek Chauvin be acquitted of all murder charges?

### Question

Derek Chauvin is,

an American former police officer charged with the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on May 25, 2020. During an arrest made by Chauvin and three other officers, he knelt on George Floyd's neck for almost eight minutes while Floyd was handcuffed and lying face down on a street. The death set off a series of protests around the world.

Chauvin was fired by the Minneapolis Police Department the day after the incident. He was initially charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter; a charge of second-degree murder was later added.

Some have suggested that he will be acquitted of his murder charges. From a Medium post,

There are six crucial pieces of information — six facts — that have been largely omitted from discussion on the Chauvin’s conduct. Taken together, they likely exonerate the officer of a murder charge. [...]

1. George Floyd was experiencing cardiopulmonary and psychological distress minutes before he was placed on the ground, let alone had a knee to his neck.

2. The Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) allows the use of neck restraint on suspects who actively resist arrest, and George Floyd actively resisted arrest on two occasions, including immediately prior to neck restraint being used.

3. The officers were recorded on their body cams assessing George Floyd as suffering from “excited delirium syndrome” (ExDS), a condition which the MPD considers an extreme threat to both the officers and the suspect. A white paper used by the MPD acknowledges that ExDS suspects may die irrespective of force involved. The officers’ response to this situation was in line with MPD guidelines for ExDS.

4. Restraining the suspect on his or her abdomen (prone restraint) is a common tactic in ExDS situations, and the white paper used by the MPD instructs the officers to control the suspect until paramedics arrive.

5. Floyd’s autopsy revealed a potentially lethal concoction of drugs — not just a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl, but also methamphetamine. Together with his history of drug abuse and two serious heart conditions, Floyd’s condition was exceptionally and unusually fragile.

6. Chauvin’s neck restraint is unlikely to have exerted a dangerous amount of force to Floyd’s neck. Floyd is shown on video able to lift his head and neck, and a robust study on double-knee restraints showed a median force exertion of approximately approximately 105lbs.

This question resolves positively if Derek Chauvin is acquitted of ALL murder$^†$ charges OR all murder charges against him are dropped. Otherwise, it resolves negatively. If he dies before resolution, the question resolves ambiguously.

$^†$ Only convictions for offences actually called "murder" trigger negative resolution ; conviction for other offences such as manslaughter does not.

Categories:
Law – Court Cases

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