Expert witness criticizes the use of force during arrest

Expert witnesses testified that former police officer Derek Chauvin used “excessive” force during the arrest of an unarmed black man, George Floyd.

Los Angeles Police Department use of force expert Sgt Jody Stiger said “deadly force” was used after Mr Floyd was handcuffed.

Chauvin, 45, was filmed for more than nine minutes on his knees when Floyd was arrested last May.

He has been tried for murder and has denied accusations against him.

The footage of Mr. Chauvin, who kneels on Mr. Floyd’s neck, has sparked a worldwide protest against racism.

The trial is in the second week and is expected to last at least a month. The defense will begin discussing the proceedings next week.

Prosecutors continued to insist that Chauvin used excessive force, but defense teams tried to pay attention to Floyd’s alleged drug use, “I ate a lot of drugs” in a body camera video. Insisted that I heard him saying.

Police officers are rarely convicted or prosecuted for deaths in custody, so the verdict in this case shows how the U.S. legal system will handle such cases in the future. Is considered to be.

What did the experts say?

Sgt Stiger, who reviews the use of the Los Angeles Police Department’s (LAPD) unit investigation, testified indictment over a two-day period.

On Tuesday, he was one of four policemen who accused Mr. Chauvin of handling his arrest. It was caused by the use of Mr. Floyd’s counterfeit $ 20 bill.

On Wednesday, he claimed that “deadly power” was used by police officers who fixed Mr Floyd to the ground.

He added that “no force is needed” after Floyd is handcuffed, and that holding Floyd on hold “may cause positional asphyxia and death.”

“He was in the prone position. He was handcuffed. He wasn’t trying to resist,” Sgt Stiger said. “He wasn’t trying to attack, kick, hit, or attack anything of that nature.”

Handcuffed behind his back, he said, made it difficult for the suspect to breathe.

“If you add weight to it, you’re more likely to die,” he continued.

He said police officers were trained to be arrested in the face of hostile crowds and, in his view, did not perceive spectators as “threatening.”

He was also asked about “pain compliance”. This means the moment when a police officer can reduce the amount of pain given to a suspect in exchange for compliance.

“What if I don’t have a compliance opportunity?” Prosecutor Steve Schleicher asked Chauvin to bend Floyd’s handcuffed hands to cause pain and obey officers’ orders. Claimed to be visible.

“At that point, it’s just pain,” Steiger replied.

Also on Wednesday, a state forensic investigator testified that Mr. Floyd’s blood was found behind a police police car used that day. Experts also told the court that the pills found in the field tested positive for illegal drugs.

Two packets of Svoxon, a drug used to treat opioid addiction, were also found in the vehicle Floyd was driving.

What did the defense insist on?

Steiger acknowledged that defense lawyer Eric Nelson argued that police actions should be viewed from the perspective of police officers on the ground, not hindsight.

Mr. Steiger agrees with Mr. Nelson and is eligible for all uses of armed policy. This means that context, security, and experience context must be taken into account when investigating potential breaches.

He also said that it would have been reasonable for Chauvin to raise awareness and arrive at the scene, as the dispatcher described Floyd as being over 6 feet (2 m) high and probably under influence. I agreed.

When Nelson pointed to a still image taken from a policeman’s body camera to claim that Chauvin’s knee was on Floyd’s scapula, Steiger was still under pressure on his neck. I objected by saying that I was there. Steiger also testified that Chauvin did not appear to be moving his knees from Floyd’s neck.

The defense team also claimed that they could hear Mr. Floyd saying “I ate too much medicine” in the body camera footage of the incident.

Steiger testified that he couldn’t hear the phrase in the clip, but another witness, Special Agent James Rayerson of the State Criminal Arrest Department, agreed initially that it would sound like that.

He later withdrew the statement, saying he believed that Mr Floyd actually said, “I don’t take medicine.”

Dramatic reversal in court

Analysis by BBC correspondent Gary Odonohue in Minneapolis

In a dramatic reversal, the chief investigator in the case of Derek Chauvin withdrew his view that George Floyd had told police officers on the scene that he had “eaten too much medicine.”

Attorneys previously sought approval from the Criminal Arrest Department James Reyerson after playing police bodycam footage twice. He accepted that after the second opportunity, he was shown a video of Mr. Floyd saying those words while he was detained on the ground.

George Floyd’s death as a result of fentanyl and methamphetamine found in his body was a central part of the defense, and Derek Chauvin knelt on him within nine minutes.

Cross-examination also revealed that it was the defense lawyer who discovered the presence of pills behind a vehicle from the scene more than six months after the incident itself.

The prosecution took evidence from a series of current and former police officers who told the court that the force used by Mr Floyd was excessive.