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“The cumulative effect of the multiple errors in these proceedings deprived Mr. Chauvin of a fair trial, in violation of his constitutional rights.”

Derek Chauvin's defense attorney in motion for a new trial, less than two weeks after his client was convicted of murdering George Floyd.

Published on

may 5, 2021

Modified on

may 5, 2021

George Floyd
  • In the motion for new trial, Chauvin's defense lawyer argues his client was deprived of a fair trial due to prosecutorial and jury misconduct, as well as errors of law at trial, resulting in a verdict that is contrary to law such that his client deserves a new trial in the interests of justice.
  • Specifically, the motion alleges the court abused its discretion when it (i) denied Chauvin's request for change of venue ahead of the trial, (ii) denied Chauvin's request for a new trial due to trial publicity, (iii) denied Chauvin's request for sequestering the jury during the duration of the entire trial (the jury was sequestered during deliberations), (iv) submitted inaccurate jury instructions, and (v) violated Chauvin's due process right to a fair trial.
  • Chauvin's lawyer also requests the judge issue an order to impeach the verdict on "the grounds that the jury committed misconduct, felt threatened or intimidated, felt race based pressure during the proceedings, and/or failed to adhere to instructions during deliberations."
  • BIG PICTURE: The motion comes about six weeks ahead of Chauvin's scheduled sentencing on charges of 2nd degree murder (punishable by up to 40 years), 3rd degree murder (punishable by up to 25 years) & 2nd degree manslaughter ((punishable by up to 10 years).
    • Under state under sentencing guidelines, defendants like Chauvin who have no criminal record are usually sentenced to 12.5 years for 2nd or 3rd degree murder, and 4 years for 2nd degree manslaughter. Also, in Minnesota, typically defendants are only sentenced for the most serious charge they’re convicted when the charges stem from the same incident.

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