Tag Archives: Describe

'Surreal': 6th Street mass shooting witnesses describe the moment shots fired in downtown Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — It began like any other night on Austin’s world-famous 6th Street: music blaring as partygoers crowded the sidewalks and bars — then the gunshots sounded.

It happened just before 1:30 a.m. Saturday morning at 400 E. 6th Street, near Trinity Street, where at least 13 people were injured after a suspect opened fire in the heart of Austin’s entertainment district.

“Everything was totally fine,” witness Matt Perlstein said. “… there were just so many people in the street. And we just heard like, nine — a bunch — gunshots going off. Everyone got on the ground. We couldn’t even comprehend what was going on at the time. It’s still difficult to comprehend.”

David Frost was also on East 6th, out for a night of fun with his cousin. He said the chaos happened just as bars were closing up for the night.

“We’re all going outside,” said Frost. “Nobody knew anything was going on until the cops were like, ‘Hey get off the street… this is an active crime scene, go to your cars immediately and get out of the streets.’

Frost said the shots were hard to hear from his vantage point, where typical Friday night noise — music and crowds — drowned out the mania.

“When you come out and you see the people, the cops putting up the crime scene tape, you know, it kind of hits close to home,” Frost said. “… it’s kind of surreal.”

While there were no fatalities, at least two of the 13 victims injured are in critical condition.

Meanwhile, Austin police are still searching for the suspected gunman: described as a Black man with a thin frame and locs-style hair.

Frost said this wasn’t the first shooting he’d seen on 6th Street and that it likely wouldn’t be the last. And not enough to keep him from visiting again.

Meanwhile, Perlstein said he’d feel more comfortable if changes were made.

“It would be nice to know that this will not happen in the future,” he said. “And that the police or whatever authorities in charge will make sure that something like this can’t happen.”

Derek Chauvin Trial Live Updates: Witnesses Describe Frustration and Fear as They Watched George Floyd Struggle


March 30, 2021, 6:12 p.m. ET

Genevieve Hansen took the stand Tuesday in the Derek Chauvin trial.
Credit…Still image, via Court TV

When Genevieve Hansen encountered police officers arresting George Floyd last May, she quickly realized that something was wrong. Ms. Hansen, who was off duty from her job as a Minneapolis firefighter and emergency medical technician, noticed that Mr. Floyd was handcuffed, seemed disoriented and that his face was “smushed into the ground,” she testified in court on Tuesday.

Ms. Hansen was the last witness called by prosecutors on the second day of the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged with murder in Mr. Floyd’s death. She recalled pleading with the police to let her help Mr. Floyd, whom Mr. Chauvin had pinned to the ground with his knee, but being rebuffed by a police officer who was telling a crowd of bystanders to back away.

“There was a man being killed,” Ms. Hansen testified. “I would have been able to provide medical attention to the best of my abilities, and this human was denied that right.”

Her testimony became more heated when she was questioned by Eric J. Nelson, the lawyer for Mr. Chauvin, who asked her if she would be distracted if people heckled her while she was fighting a fire and noted that emergency medical workers do not routinely approach scenes where the police are working until the officers tell them it is safe.

When Mr. Nelson asked if the crowd was upset at the scene of Mr. Floyd’s arrest, Ms. Hansen shot back, “I don’t know if you’ve seen anybody be killed, but it’s upsetting.” The response earned her a warning from the judge.

And when the lawyer asked her about statements she made describing Mr. Floyd as a “small, slim man,” she responded by saying that while he appeared small with police officers on top of him, she knew, now, that he was not small. That testy exchange brought another warning from the judge.

“I’m advising you, do not argue with counsel and specifically, do not argue with the court,” Judge Peter A. Cahill said. “They have the right to ask questions, your job is to answer them.”

He told her to come back on Wednesday morning to complete her testimony and, shortly after, adjourned, marking the end of the trial’s second day.


March 30, 2021, 6:03 p.m. ET

Derek Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric Nelson, had a testy exchange with mixed martial arts fighter Donald Williams II during the second day of the trial.
Credit…Still image from Court TV

The second day of the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who is accused of killing George Floyd, was marked by emotional testimony from witnesses who recounted what they saw and how it left them feeling traumatized. Six people testified in all, including four witnesses who were younger than 18 on the day of Mr. Floyd’s arrest.

Prosecutors walked through the arrest minute by minute with the witnesses. The youngest of them testified off camera, though viewers could hear them in real time. At times, their voices wavered as they recalled the events of May 25, and attorneys gave them time between questions to collect themselves. Here are the highlights of the second day.

  • The testimony of the young witnesses included the grief and anger felt so profoundly by people across the country in the days and weeks after Mr. Floyd’s death. Their presence made another point as well: They have become victims themselves. The trauma of seeing a man lose consciousness while they could do nothing to stop it clearly left its mark, as made evident by their tears as they testified.

  • The young witnesses told consistent versions of what they saw, and all said they believed at the time that something was going horribly wrong. “I almost walked away at first because it was a lot to watch,” said one witness, a high school senior, whose full name was not given in court. “But I knew that it was wrong and I couldn’t just walk away, even though I couldn’t do anything about it.”

  • The most emotionally jarring testimony came from Darnella Frazier, who took a video of the arrest that helped ignite protests across the country. Ms. Frazier expressed regret for not physically confronting Mr. Chauvin but said she ultimately believed the former officer was at fault for Mr. Floyd’s death. “It’s been nights I stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not physically interacting and not saving his life,” Ms. Frazier said, adding that she has often reflected on the similarities of her Black family members and Mr. Floyd. She worries for their safety and her own. “I look at how that could have been one of them.”

  • Mr. Chauvin’s attorney, Eric Nelson, had a testy exchange with a mixed martial arts fighter who was at the scene of the arrest and testified on Monday and Tuesday. On Tuesday, Mr. Nelson argued that the witness, Donald Williams II, did not have enough medical or police training experience to analyze Mr. Floyd’s cause of death. Previously, Mr. Williams had testified that the placement of Mr. Chauvin’s knee could have caused Mr. Floyd to suffocate. The defense also highlighted the loud crowd that formed on the sidewalk and yelled at the police officers during the arrest. Mr. Williams pushed back on the attorney’s description, saying, “You can’t paint me out to be angry.”

  • Prosecutors continued to focus on how long Mr. Chauvin kept his knee on Mr. Floyd, pinning him to the street. While the defense may argue that use of force was necessary, prosecutors will want to convince the jury that the amount of time was unreasonable and unlawful. Even if the defense can effectively argue that force was necessary at first, prosecutors want to show that Mr. Chauvin kept Mr. Floyd pinned even after he lost consciousness.

  • Genevieve Hansen, a Minneapolis firefighter and emergency medical technician, also gave emotional testimony, wiping tears from her eyes as she recalled witnessing the arrest. Ms. Hansen, 27, had urged police officers to take Mr. Floyd’s pulse. She also called 911 at the time — making her the third witness who called the police on the police.


March 30, 2021, 5:56 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Judge Cahill returned the phone to Ms. Jackson and called the episode, “a lesson learned and we’ll leave it at that.” He then adjourned for the day.


March 30, 2021, 5:56 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

This is strange. Judge Cahill just brought Rachel Jackson, who said she is the media representative for Darnella Frazier, to the stand and asked her why she was taking pictures on the 18th floor, where the courtroom is located. “You must delete the picture,” he said.


March 30, 2021, 5:46 p.m. ET

Reporting from New York

“I don’t know if you’ve seen anybody be killed, but it’s upsetting,” Genevieve Hansen, who is now testifying, said when Derek Chauvin’s lawyer asked if she would describe bystanders at the scene of George Floyd’s arrest as upset or angry. Judge Peter A. Cahill has admonished her to just answer the lawyer’s questions.


March 30, 2021, 5:48 p.m. ET

Reporting from New York

The judge again admonished Ms.Hansen after several testy exchanges between her and Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer. “Do not argue with the court, do not argue with counsel,” Judge Cahill said to her after clearing the courtroom of the jurors.


March 30, 2021, 5:29 p.m. ET

Kaia Hirt has chained herself to the barricade surrounding the Hennepin County Government Center.
Credit…Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times

Kaia Hirt, a public school English teacher, has been chained to a fence outside the Hennepin County Government Center since Monday evening, part of a protest urging police reform as the trial of Derek Chauvin takes place inside.

Above Ms. Hart was a sign urging public officials to meet with the victims of police violence. On her face was a “Black Lives Matter” mask.

Ms. Hirt, the founder of a group called “Good Trouble for Justice,” said she has seen police officers mistreat young people, especially those with mental health challenges. “The police can be so violent,” she said. “They literally terrorize and traumatize. I have so many brilliant students at school of all colors. Any of them or my kids could be next.”

On Tuesday, Ms. Hirt described an altercation that she said involved officers and protesters over a sun shade that friends brought to assist her interactions with the media. The police said the “tent” had to go. Protesters said it should stay. The situation became heated, she said. Ms. Hirt finally told her colleagues to back down — and later regretted it.

“I shouldn’t be afraid of the police in this country,” she said. “I am not afraid now.”

Ms. Hirt planned to leave her post around 7 p.m. Tuesday after 24 hours. A fellow demonstrator planned to take her spot, she said.


March 30, 2021, 5:26 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

The exchange between Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer and Genevieve Hansen, the off-duty firefighter who was at the scene of George Floyd’s death, turns testy when he asks her if it would be distracting to her if bystanders were yelling at her while she was fighting a fire.


March 30, 2021, 5:27 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

She said it wouldn’t bother her because she was confident in her training and her ability to properly fight a fire. “I would not be concerned,” she said.


March 30, 2021, 5:25 p.m. ET

Genevieve Hansen, a 27-year-old firefighter and emergency medical worker, was on a walk when she saw flashing lights and approached to see if she knew the officers or could help. When she saw George Floyd on the ground, unresponsive under the weight of several officers holding him down, she approached Officer Tou Thao. In her testimony, she said she was “distressed” by his response:

He said something along the lines of, if you really are a Minneapolis firefighter, you would know better than to get involved. … First, I was worried that he wasn’t going to believe me and not let me help. And I also … that’s … that’s not right. I mean, that’s exactly what I should have done. There was no medical assistance on scene. And I got there and I could have given medical assistance. That’s exactly what I should have done. … I would have requested additional help. I would have wanted someone to call 911 for the paramedics and fire to come. … I would have checked his airway. I would have been worried about a spinal cord injury because he had so much weight on his neck. I would have opened his airway to check if there are any obstructions, and I would have checked for a pulse. And when I didn’t find a pulse, if that was the case, I would have started compressions.”

She said she eventually made the decision to call for help:

I should have called 911 immediately, but I didn’t. And when things calmed down, I realized that I, I wanted them to know what was going on. I wanted to basically report it.


March 30, 2021, 5:12 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

For Derek Chauvin and his lawyer, this phase of the trial, with witnesses describing their fear and frustration as they watched the former police officer restrain George Floyd, is mostly about sitting there and absorbing emotional and damaging testimony[4]. Not much they can do about it. We’ll see Mr. Chauvin’s defense emerge more clearly when witnesses testify about police use-of-force polices and the medical evidence about the cause of Mr. Floyd’s death.


March 30, 2021, 5:10 p.m. ET

Television crews wait for news from the trial of Derek Chauvin on Tuesday.
Credit…Aaron Nesheim for The New York Times

As a former police officer faces murder charges in the death of George Floyd, we’ve assembled some of the essential media reports on the case over the past year produced by The New York Times and other outlets.

Some highlights:

The New York Times

Local Television

Minneapolis Star Tribune

The Washington Post


March 30, 2021, 4:23 p.m. ET

Reporting from New York

Now testifying is Genevieve Hansen, 27, a Minneapolis firefighter and emergency medical technician. She was off-duty when she came upon the police arresting George Floyd last May and yelled for the officers to take his pulse.


March 30, 2021, 4:24 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

She also made a 911 call from the scene. This will be the third time now that the jury hears from a witness who called the police on the police.


March 30, 2021, 4:20 p.m. ET

The plaza outside the courthouse in downtown Minneapolis on Tuesday.
Credit…Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times

While the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who has been charged with murder in George Floyd’s death, was in progress on Tuesday in the courthouse downtown, interested observers were flowing in and out of the plaza outside. Some headed into the skyway network of bridges above the street that links downtown buildings.

Kerry Dougherty, 65, of Burnsville, Minn., about 15 miles south of Minneapolis, was inside one bridge. He’s a box-store stocker who has traveled downtown since the 1980s to visit his barber, whose shop is connected to a skyway entrance. He had met Mr. Floyd a few times and has been thinking about making his way back to his old neighborhood in South Minneapolis where Mr. Floyd died. “I met him while living a few blocks off of 38th and Chicago. I remember he told me that he worked security at a bar and restaurant.”

Mr. Dougherty has been following the trial coverage intermittently and reflecting on his brief time socializing with Mr. Floyd. They once drove together with friends between parties, he said.

“He was in the back seat,” Mr. Dougherty said. “I was driving; he was a nice guy.”

He said he thinks the videotape is the most damning of the evidence so far.

“The videotape is just so overwhelming,” he said. “It’s clear that he died as a result of police action, and, to back that up, had they sat George down on the curb with his hands cuffed behind his back until they were ready to put him in an ambulance or a police car or van safely, George Floyd would be alive today.”

He added, “The police could have been gentler. You don’t always need to use all of this force. Just sit him down, look him in the eye and talk man to man.”


March 30, 2021, 4:16 p.m. ET

The George Floyd memorial site on Tuesday.
Credit…Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times

In testimony on Tuesday afternoon, a high school student said she came upon George Floyd’s arrest while heading to the Cup Foods store for a mobile phone accessory. She began filming and joined bystanders calling for the police officers to get off Mr. Floyd, who was face down on the ground. At one point, she considered leaving because the scene was so overwhelming:

It felt really like, like a lot to take in at first. I almost walked away at first because it was a lot to watch. But I knew that it was wrong and I couldn’t just walk away, even though I couldn’t do anything about it.

She testified that she had not returned to the site since then because it was too upsetting for her. Asked why she and the crowd were angry at the time of the arrest, she said:

I was upset because there was nothing that we could do as bystanders except watch them take this man’s life in front of our eyes.


March 30, 2021, 3:30 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

The family member of George Floyd in the courtroom today is Brandon Williams, Mr. Floyd’s nephew. (Because of coronavirus restrictions, Mr. Floyd’s family and Derek Chauvin’s family each get one seat.) Mr. Williams told one of the reporters inside the courtroom that he had never watched the infamous video of Mr. Floyd’s arrest because it would be too painful. He said he grew up in the same house as Mr. Floyd in Houston[5].


March 30, 2021, 3:44 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

The Chauvin family seat remains empty, as it has been for three weeks, throughout jury selection and again on the opening day of the trial on Monday.


March 30, 2021, 3:33 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

When videos have been played in the courtroom today, Mr. Williams has looked away or down at his hands.


March 30, 2021, 3:14 p.m. ET

Reporting from New York

In his questioning, the lawyer for Derek Chauvin is focusing on the fact that the current teenage witness previously told the authorities that she had seen police officers check George Floyd’s pulse “multiple times.” Other witnesses have said they never saw the officers do so.


March 30, 2021, 3:10 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Prosecutors continue to focus on the amount of time that Derek Chauvin’s knee was on George Floyd’s neck. They hope this will help them establish that even as the defense says the use of force was necessary at one point as they arrested Mr. Floyd, it eventually became unnecessary and unlawful. “I knew time was running out or it had already,” said the current witness, who was 17 at the time and is testifying off-camera. She added that she believed she was watching Mr. Floyd die.


March 30, 2021, 3:11 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

One of the main prosecution points with these bystanders has been that by witnessing what happened to Mr. Floyd, they also became victims. They are asking about the lasting effects and trauma of having seen what happened to him.


March 30, 2021, 2:53 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

The prosecution is playing another bystander video taken by this witness, who was 17 at the time of George Floyd’s death. She is less emotional on the stand than Darnella Frazier[6], who was also 17 at the time and testified this morning, but clearly those who watched Mr. Floyd’s arrest are deeply traumatized. The prosecutors hope this testimony will weigh on the jury.


March 30, 2021, 2:59 p.m. ET

Reporting from New York

The side-by-side presentation of the bystander video and surveillance footage is meant to give a full sense of the scene, something both sides want to stress. Derek Chauvin’s lawyer wants to show that bystanders were yelling angrily, and the prosecution wants to show that witnesses were disturbed by what they saw.


March 30, 2021, 2:36 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

It appears that the prosecution’s case will be presented in three phases, and we remain in the first phase: focusing on May 25, the day George Floyd died, and the details, evidence and eyewitness testimony from that day. This will likely be the most emotional piece of the prosecution’s case. The other two phases will be focused on medical testimony and police policies.


March 30, 2021, 2:28 p.m. ET

Credit…Court TV still image, via Associated Press

Clad in a light-blue surgical mask and a suit and tie, Derek Chauvin betrayed little emotion on the second day of his trial as witnesses described him as cold and heartless. He scribbled notes diligently on a legal pad, stole glances at the jury and stood when identified by witnesses.

Attempts by the defense to humanize Mr. Chauvin, the former police officer accused of second-degree murder in the death of George Floyd, are central to their effort to portray him as a responsible person who was only doing his job, said Justin Hansford, a law professor at Howard University’s law school. That’s part of a strategy to mitigate the “heinous” video that shows Mr. Chauvin with his knee on Mr. Floyd, he said.

A defense lawyer will advise clients to look empathetic and engaged “even when there are emotional pieces of testimony,” said Mr. Hansford. “The jurors will certainly glance over at him, to look at his engagement.” He added that defendants are often advised not to have any skeptical or hostile reactions. “The position is that you are sorry about what happened to the gentleman but you were doing your job.’’

Mary Fan (not Fay, as previously reported), a former federal prosecutor who teaches criminal law and criminal proceedings at the University of Washington School of Law, said that the defense strategy appeared to rely on “split-second syndrome.”

“The Supreme Court has recognized that law enforcement officers have to make decisions in the heat of the moment,” she said. “They’ve given police officers a lot of latitude in these judgment calls, including with respect to the use of force.”

Mr. Chauvin’s demeanor — seen in his note taking and professional attire — played into this strategy by making him seem “respectful of procedure” and provided an alternative image for the jury to counter the one of the officer seen in the video. It emphasized that “this is a trained professional with almost two decades of experience who was in a volatile situation,” Ms. Fan said.


March 30, 2021, 2:25 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Court resumes after a lunch break. The next witness, another bystander who was a minor last year at the time of George Floyd’s death, will provide testimony off camera, like two other young witnesses did this morning.


March 30, 2021, 2:30 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

The witness, a young woman, was 17 last May. She drove her grandfather’s tan Buick to Cup Foods to buy a charger for her phone. This is another witness the prosecution is putting on to humanize the group of bystanders that the defense has portrayed as an unruly mob that distracted the officers’ attention from Mr. Floyd as he was being restrained.


March 30, 2021, 1:45 p.m. ET

In testimony Tuesday morning, Darnella Frazier, a teenager who filmed the widely viewed video of George Floyd’s death, described how her life has changed since taking the footage, how she has blamed herself for not intervening and how, ultimately, she blamed Chauvin for Floyd’s death:

When I look at George Floyd, I look at my dad. I look at my brothers. I look at my cousins, my uncles, because they’re all Black. I have a Black father. I have a Black brother. I have Black friends. And I look at that, and I look at how that could have been one of them. It’s been nights I stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not physically interacting and not saving his life, but it’s like, it’s not what I should have done. It’s what he should have done.


March 30, 2021, 1:41 p.m. ET

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Young Bystander Testifies in Derek Chauvin Trial

On Tuesday, the prosecution called to the stand a 9-year-old girl who witnessed the arrest of George Floyd. She testified that she saw Derek Chauvin put his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck.

“So you saw a knee being put on the neck of George Floyd. When was the knee taken — did you see that the knee was ever taken off of George Floyd’s neck?” “No.” “Were you there when an ambulance came?” “Yes.” “Tell us what happened after you saw the ambulance come.” “He asked, the ambulance had to push him off of him.” “And how did that happen? Did they simply come in an ambulance, and then go up to push him off or what happened?” “They asked him nicely to get off of him.” “And when they asked him nicely to get off of him, what did he do?” “He still stayed on him.” “And then what happened after he still stayed on him, what did the ambulance people do?” “They just had to pull him off, get off of him.” “Are you able to tell us, having been there on this day and seeing the officer on top of George Floyd, how did you feel about that? How did it affect you?” “I was sad and kind of mad.” “And can you tell us why were you sad and mad?” “Because it felt like he was stopping his breathing, and it was kind of, like, hurting him.”

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On Tuesday, the prosecution called to the stand a 9-year-old girl who witnessed the arrest of George Floyd. She testified that she saw Derek Chauvin put his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck.CreditCredit…Court TV still image, via Reuters

Three witnesses testified on Tuesday morning, the second day of the trial of Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer who has been charged with murder in George Floyd’s death. They included Darnella Frazier, the teenager who took the widely shared video of Mr. Chauvin kneeling on Mr. Floyd’s neck.

Here are highlights from the second day of trial:

  • Judge Peter A. Cahill ruled in the morning that four witnesses who are 18 or younger — including Ms. Frazier, her cousin and two others who are expected to testify on Tuesday afternoon — could deliver their testimony off-camera. Audio of their testimony will still be broadcast live, but the cameras will be trained on the judge or the lawyers questioning them.

  • Ms. Frazier, who was 17 when she recorded the cellphone video of Mr. Floyd’s arrest that brought widespread attention to his death, gave emotional testimony in court, saying she had felt regret[7] for not physically confronting Mr. Chauvin, but that he was the one who was ultimately at fault. “When I look at George Floyd, I look at my dad,” said Ms. Frazier, now 18. “I look at my brothers, I look at my cousins, my uncles, because they’re all Black. I have a Black father. I have a Black brother. I have Black friends.” She added, “I look at how that could have been one of them.”

  • Ms. Frazier’s 9-year-old cousin, who was walking with her to the Cup Foods convenience store when they came upon the arrest, also briefly testified: “I was sad and kind of mad,” she said of seeing a police officer with his knee on a man’s neck. “It felt like he was stopping his breathing and it was kind of like hurting him.”

  • Donald Williams II, a mixed martial arts fighter who was also at the scene of Mr. Floyd’s arrest, had a testy exchange with the lawyer for Mr. Chauvin[8], who sought to emphasize that Mr. Williams did not have adequate medical or police training to evaluate the arrest of Mr. Floyd. Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric J. Nelson, also highlighted the loud crowd that formed as Mr. Floyd was being arrested. But Mr. Williams pushed back, saying, “You can’t paint me out to be angry.”


March 30, 2021, 1:08 p.m. ET

Protestors passed Minneapolis City Hall on Monday on the way to the Hennepin County Government Center, where the Derek Chauvin trial was beginning.
Credit…Aaron Nesheim for The New York Times

The 12-person jury in the murder trial of Derek Chauvin was selected from an original pool of more than 300 people from across Hennepin County. Over three weeks of jury selection, anonymous citizens sat one at a time on the witness stand and answered questions from the lawyers and judge about the political views and ability (or inability) to be impartial in the case.

Here are the jurors in the trial. After the two sides present their cases, 12 of the jurors will begin deliberations. Two others are alternates.

Juror No. 2 A white man in his 20s who works as a chemist and said he had not seen the bystander video and had strong views that the criminal justice system is biased against minorities.

Juror No. 9 A woman in her 20s who identifies as mixed race. She has an uncle who is a police officer and said she wanted to be on the jury.

Juror No. 19 A white man in his 30s who works as a financial auditor. He has a friend in the Minneapolis Police Department and said that George Floyd being under the influence of drugs shouldn’t be a factor in the case.

Juror No. 27 A Black man in his 30s, who immigrated to the United States 14 years ago and works in information technology. He disagreed with defunding the police and told his wife that Mr. Floyd “could have been me.”

Juror No. 44 A white woman in her 50s who is a health care executive. She said Mr. Floyd’s death awakened her to “white privilege.”

Juror No. 52 A Black man in his 30s who writes poems and coaches youth sports. He said he did not believe Mr. Chauvin intended to kill Mr. Floyd but wondered why the other three officers did not intervene.

Juror No. 55 A white woman in her 50s who took up motorcycle riding to honor her late husband. She said she had never watched the full bystander video because it disturbed her.

Juror No. 79 A Black man in his 40s who lives in the suburbs and said last year’s protests had no impact on his community.

Juror No. 85 A woman in her 40s who identifies as multiracial and works as a corporate consultant.

Juror No. 89 A white woman in her 50s who is a nurse and has worked with Covid-19 patients.

Juror No. 91 A Black woman in her 60s who is a grandmother. Asked about the Black Lives Matter movement, she said, “I am Black, and my life matters.”

Juror No. 92 A white woman in her 40s who works in the insurance industry. She said Mr. Floyd did not deserve to die and that the officers used excessive force.

Juror No. 96 A white woman in her 50s who volunteers at homeless shelters. She said she had a “neutral” opinion of Mr. Floyd.

Juror No. 118 A white woman in her 20s who is a social worker and recently married.


March 30, 2021, 12:58 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

There’s something very interesting about this question that has emerged in the defense lawyer’s cross-examination of witnesses, of whether the group that confronted the police officers subduing George Floyd was an angry mob, or a gathering of concerned residents. It speaks to larger questions of how police officers see the community — are they quick to see community members as a threat? — and how the community views the police force.


March 30, 2021, 12:56 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

The court just heard some very short off-camera testimony from the 9-year-old cousin of Darnella Frazier, who walked with Ms. Frazier to Cup Foods on the night of the George Floyd incident. The girl described seeing a police officer with his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck. “I was sad and kind of mad,” she said. “It felt like he was stopping his breathing, and it was kind of, like, hurting him.” The defense lawyer asked her no questions.


March 30, 2021, 12:49 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Very emotional end to the testimony of Darnella Frazier[9], the young woman who took the widely seen video of George Floyd’s arrest. She said: “When I look at George Floyd, I look at my dad. I look at my brothers. I look at my cousins, my uncles because they are all Black. I have a Black father. I have a Black brother. I have Black friends. And I look at that, and I look at how that could have been one of them.”


March 30, 2021, 12:37 p.m. ET

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Crowds Take to the Streets as Chauvin Trial Begins

Crowds gathered near the courthouse in Minneapolis on Monday as the trial for Derek Chauvin, the former police officer accused of killing George Floyd, began.

[crowd cheering] “So we’re here today to say his name.” [crowd chanting] “Boots on the ground.” “We’re here, we’re here.” “Boots on the ground.” “Stay behind the banner. Stay behind the banner, stay behind the banner.”

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Crowds gathered near the courthouse in Minneapolis on Monday as the trial for Derek Chauvin, the former police officer accused of killing George Floyd, began.CreditCredit…Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times

Just outside the courthouse, near a light-rail line across the street from City Hall, about two dozen protesters gathered on a corner carrying a Black Lives Matter sign, sharing coffee and blankets. They gave out hand sanitizer and masks.

One activist napped on a folding chair on a lawn just south of the courthouse. The fence outside the courthouse had activist signs, including one that called for abolishing the police.

At one point, tensions started to rise as protesters moved into the street. Police tried to move them back to the sidewalk as chants from the crowd grew. People in cars revved their engines. A man stepped out of an orange Subaru and yelled that the police were bad and that the system was racist. The atmosphere eventually calmed but the small group of activists continued to chant.


March 30, 2021, 12:36 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Here’s an update from the journalist serving as a pool reporter within the courtroom: Several jurors (who cannot be seen on camera in the live coverage of the proceedings) appear especially engaged today, taking a lot of notes. One juror in particular appeared uncomfortable and shocked during some of the testimony this morning.


March 30, 2021, 12:30 p.m. ET

Reporting from New York

Returning to the witness stand after a break is Darnella Frazier[10], 18, who took the widely shared video of George Floyd’s arrest. A reporter in the courtroom said she was crying before the break as she described the scene.


March 30, 2021, 12:32 p.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Derek Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric Nelson, begins his cross examination of Ms. Frazier in a friendly manner. Unlike with Mr. Williams, the bystander and mixed-martial artist who testified this morning[11], he will have to tread lightly and not seem to antagonize Ms. Frazier, who appears traumatized by what she witnessed last year.


March 30, 2021, 12:21 p.m. ET

In testimony on Tuesday morning, Donald Williams II, the mixed martial artist who witnessed George Floyd’s death, described what he saw:

Correct. Like I said before, you could see that he was going through, uh, tremendous pain and you can see it in his face from the grunting. Uh, you can see his eyes slowly, you know, rolling back up in his head and him having his mouth open, um, wide open, slowly with drool and slob and dryness on his mouth. And, uh, you can see that he’s trying to, you know, gasp for air, you know, and trying to be able to breathe, uh, as he’s down there and trying to move his face, you know, side to side so he can you know, I’m believing, I’m assuming gasp for more air there.


March 30, 2021, 11:59 a.m. ET

Reporting from New York

The court is taking a 15-minute break. When the jury returns at 11:15 Central, Darnella Frazier[12], who at 17 fimed the video of George Floyd’s arrest on a cellphone, bringing attention to his death, will return to the witness stand.


March 30, 2021, 11:50 a.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

Ms. Frazier said the only violence she saw that day was from the police officers, a rebuttal to the defense’s portrayal of the bystanders as an angry mob that diverted the officers’ attention from Mr. Floyd.


March 30, 2021, 11:56 a.m. ET

Reporting from Minneapolis

As is so often the case, this trial is a matter of perspective. Was there an angry mob that was striking fear into the police? Or were the police threatening bystanders who were trying to get George Floyd help?


March 30, 2021, 11:48 a.m. ET

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Donald Williams II, Mixed Martial Artist, Questioned in Chauvin Trial

On Tuesday, Derek Chauvin’s defense team questioned Donald Williams II, a mixed martial artist who witnessed George Floyd’s death.

“Were there things that you saw on Mr. Floyd’s face that were significant to you?” “Correct, like I said before, you could see that he was going through tremendous pain, and you can see it in his face from the grunting. You can see it in his eyes, slowly, you know, rolling back in his head and him having his mouth open.” “The notion of a chokehold is very common within the martial arts community, right?” “That is correct.” “Submissions, and there are many forms, right?” “Correct.” “The referee may come and lift up the person’s arm to see if they’re conscious or unconscious, right?” “That’s correct.” “That’s a way of determining whether or not —” “That’s if they’re not moving. I mean, that’s just they’re not moving. They’re not fighting, and stuff like that. Yeah the referee, he has to make sure that the person is conscious, so he might say ‘keep moving.’ If they’re not moving, he might check, you know, and sometimes the opponent will know that that person is out. So the point is, you look at the ref like he’s out, like he’s out, he’s out, you know, things like that.” “And sometimes you don’t know that they’re out. And that’s why the ref comes and picks up the arm, right?” “Most opponents know when you put the person out.” “But it’s possible, right? It’s a yes or no question.” “It’s possible? “All right.” “How about that?”

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On Tuesday, Derek Chauvin’s defense team questioned Donald Williams II, a mixed martial artist who witnessed George Floyd’s death.CreditCredit…Still image from Court TV

The defense attorney for the former police officer Derek Chauvin spent Tuesday morning discrediting Donald Williams II, a mixed martial artist who witnessed the death of George Floyd, by drawing attention to his lack of knowledge of medical aid and police training.

Eric J. Nelson spent a good deal of the morning on the second day of the trial asking Mr. Williams to outline his experience as a fighter, his knowledge of different moves and even asking him whether he ever was able to speak when he was held in chokehold during a fight.

Mr. Williams reacted by turning to the judge on that last question, puzzled. The line of questioning suggested, as some observers have said, that Mr. Floyd would not have been able to speak had Mr. Chauvin cut off his airway by kneeling on his neck.

What began as a routine back-and-forth questioning that focused on Mr. Williams detailing his fighting experience became more pointed when Mr. Nelson began to ask him if he had threatened police as he watched Mr. Floyd be detained. Mr. Nelson attempted to paint Mr. Williams as an angry, disruptive bystander who had no medical experience with which to accurately judge the police officers’ actions. Mr. Nelson argued in his opening statement that the bystanders made the police’s job harder.

The back and forth was tense at times, with Mr. Nelson asking Mr. Williams if witnessing the situation made him want to fight the police officers.

“You can’t paint me out to be angry,” Mr. Williams said multiple times. Mr. Williams said he could see Mr. Floyd “was going through tremendous pain.’’

The New York Times