George Floyd

The Minnesota Supreme Court Rejects the Legal Theory Underlying a Murder Charge Against Derek Chauvin

The ruling won't help him much, because he also was convicted of a more serious charge, based on a "particularly weird" form of the felony murder doctrine.

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Former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor, who fatally shot an unarmed 911 caller in 2017, was originally sentenced to more than 12 years in prison. Yesterday a state judge, responding to a recent Minnesota Supreme Court ruling that rejected the most serious charge against Noor, imposed a new sentence that is less than half as long.

That development is relevant to the case against Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis cop who in June was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison for killing George Floyd in May 2020. Chauvin, like Noor, was convicted of third-degree murder, a charge that was clearly inappropriate under the reading of the statute that the Minnesota Supreme Court endorsed last month. But unlike Noor, Chauvin also was convicted of second-degree murder, so the court's ruling won't affect his sentence.

The charging decisions in both cases nevertheless illustrate the challenges posed by high-profile cases against police officers accused of unlawfully using deadly force. Prosecutors face pressure to file charges that trigger penalties commensurate with public outrage, even when those charges are legally questionable.

Noor's case began on a Saturday night in 2017, when Justine Damond called police to report a possible rape in progress, based on noises she had heard from the alley behind her home. Shortly after Noor and his partner, Officer Matthew Harrity, arrived in their squad car, they were "startled by a loud sound" and suddenly saw Damond at the window on the driver's side. Both officers were scared enough to draw their guns. But only Noor fired his, striking Damond once in the stomach. She died 20 minutes later.

One of the charges against Noor, second-degree manslaughter, seemed to clearly fit the facts of the case. It applies to someone who "causes the death of another" through "culpable negligence whereby the person creates an unreasonable risk, and consciously takes chances of causing death or great bodily harm to another."

The other charge against Noor, third-degree "depraved mind" murder, was more problematic. It applies to someone who unintentionally "causes the death of another by perpetrating an act eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life." At the time of Noor's trial in 2019, some case law suggested this provision applies only to dangerous conduct, such as firing blindly into a crowd, that is not directed at any particular person.

The Minnesota Supreme Court affirmed that interpretation on September 15, when it overturned Noor's murder conviction and ordered his resentencing on the manslaughter charge. "The mental state necessary for depraved-mind murder," the court said, "is a generalized indifference to human life and—based on our precedent—cannot exist when the defendant's conduct is directed with particularity at the person who is killed."

That decision had a big impact on Noor's sentence. "Depraved mind" murder carries a maximum sentence of 25 years. For a defendant with no criminal record, the presumptive penalty under Minnesota's sentencing guidelines is 150 months (12.5 years), which is the sentence that Noor received in 2019. Second-degree manslaughter through culpable negligence, by contrast, carries a maximum penalty of 10 years and a presumptive sentence of four years. At yesterday's resentencing, Hennepin County District Court Judge Kathryn Quaintance gave Noor four years and nine months, reducing his original sentence by 62 percent.

Chauvin, like Noor, clearly targeted a particular person: Floyd, who died after Chauvin pinned him facedown to the pavement with his knee for nine and a half minutes. For that reason, Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill initially dismissed the "depraved mind" murder charge against Chauvin, but he was overruled by an appeals court. The Minnesota Supreme Court's ruling means Cahill was right after all.

That decision will not help Chauvin much, because he was also convicted of a more serious charge: unintentional second-degree murder, which applies to someone who "causes the death of a human being, without intent to effect the death of any person, while committing or attempting to commit a felony offense." The maximum penalty for that crime is 40 years, but the presumptive sentence is the same as the presumptive sentence for "depraved mind" murder: 150 months. Based on several "aggravating factors," Cahill chose a sentence of 270 months, or 22.5 years.

While the Minnesota Supreme Court's decision in Noor's case does not cast doubt on the validity of that sentence, felony murder is also a controversial way to characterize Chauvin's conduct. Many jurisdictions allow murder charges against people who participate in felonies that turn deadly, even when the defendant did not attack the victim or intend to kill him. But Minnesota is highly unusual in not requiring an "independent felony," such as burglary or robbery, that is distinct from the actions that caused the victim's death.

In Chauvin's case, the "felony offense" underlying the second-degree murder charge is third-degree assault, which is the same as the conduct that killed Floyd. Because Minnesota does not have an independent felony rule, prosecutors can treat nearly any unintentionally lethal assault as murder rather than manslaughter, which dramatically increases the potential penalty.

After Chauvin was charged with second-degree murder last year, Ted Sampsell-Jones, a professor at Mitchell Hamline School of Law in St. Paul, noted that the felony murder doctrine is itself "highly controversial," because it can result in long prison sentences for tangential participants in crimes that unexpectedly lead to someone's death. He added that Minnesota's felony murder rule is "a particularly weird form of it"—a point he reiterated after Chauvin was convicted in April. "Minnesota law is way out on a limb when it comes to how felony second-degree murder is defined," Sampsell-Jones told USA Today. "We're one of the [few] states that allows assaults to be used as a felony for felony murder."

Despite that anomaly, it seems unlikely that Chauvin could succeed on appeal by challenging Minnesota's expansive take on felony murder. As public defender Greg Egan noted in a 2018 Mitchell Hamline Law Review article, the Minnesota Supreme Court "has a long history of predicating the felony murder doctrine on assault," although he argued that it had repeatedly done so "without significant legal reasoning."

Chauvin, like Noor, also was convicted of second-degree manslaughter, but that charge alone might have led to a sentence similar to the one that Noor received yesterday. Former U.S. Attorney General Bob Barr reportedly worried that the sentence contemplated by a plea deal that Chauvin proposed a few days after Floyd's death—"more than 10 years," according to The New York Times—would be perceived as inadequate. A sentence of less than five years no doubt would have caused even more dismay.

The prospect of public outrage, however, does not relieve prosecutors of the responsibility to file charges that are legally justified by the facts of the case. Nor does a defendant's notoriety nullify longstanding concerns about the felony murder doctrine, which is especially troubling when it gives prosecutors a license to turn manslaughter into murder if they think public opinion demands it.

NEXT: 40 Years of Trillion-Dollar Debt

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  1. With bated breath, I await the MOST Esteemed of ALL Legal Scholars, Der JesseBahnFuhrer, weighing in on this one! For a High School Dorp-Out, His skills at dorping out are AMAZING, especially on legal-mumbo-jumbo matters!

    1. Squirrelock Holmes is on the case!

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      3. So muting him doesn't hide the whole thread? I have the disappoint.

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    2. His posts look especially good in grey, with Show Username and never-to-be-used Unmute buttons.

      1. Reminder: Poor sarcasmic thinks he's punishing Jesse. Getting muted by Ken and soldiermedic was so traumatic for him that he believes that when he does it to others they'll actually care.
        By telling people that they're "muted" every day, he thinks he's crushing their spirit.

        1. Sshhh! Do you want to get on “the list”?

          1. Lol. I love being first on the list.

          2. The funny thing is he unmutes each response and reads them, he's such an attention troll.

        2. Meanwhile, back at the ranch... MarxistMammaryBahnFuhrer the Jesus-Killer, Queen of ALL of the Most Righteous Echo Chambers, is gonna PUNISH-PUNISH-PUNISH all of the non-conforming ones... "Conform, or be cast out"... By EXCLUDING them from the Cool Kids Club! The stars on the bellies of the Star-Bellied Sneetches will be ERASED, She beseeches the Star-bellied Sneetches, if they should STRAY from The Approved Way! Get OFF of my beaches, ye unclean Sneetches!!!

          1. I don't know what you're on, but I want some.

            1. I am being Doctored by Dr. Seuss, who is AKA Dr. Feel-Good, at times! (If'n ye are a Sneetch at the beach!)

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_V6knB0lA4

            2. I’ve been accused in the past of SQRLSY’s being my sock puppet, which is not something I would be capable of. I wouldn’t have a clue how to come up with SQRLSY’s style.

              1. Its a mixture of being old and obsolete and unmedicated psychosis and pathetic whining. You could come up with a style like that.

              2. I'm not convinced yet. SQRLSY's last post on this page was at 7:28 PM. That leaves over 2 hours to take his meds and become Mike again.

                1. But which is Jekyll and which Hyde?

              3. Just another one of their "Let's make him dance by telling lies and then calling him a liar when he denies it" shticks.

        3. I have commented on his posts in 4 days. Driving him mad.

      2. So true

    3. Oh the irony. I posted about this in a roundup thread just last week. Sorry sarcs sock.

  2. Chauvin should push for Floyd’s death certificate to be changed to “Died from COVID.” Changed from “Died of overdose.”

    1. We shall ALL eventually die from COVID! It is our FATE!

      (This brings more POWAH to the CDC, which is gathering all the Magic Rings of Moor-Gore as we speak! After the CDC triumphs, we can ALL live RENT-FREE!!!)

    2. Chauvin is probably too busy watching his back to worry about much else these days.

      Which is nice.

      1. The drug addict thug doesnt have a back to worry about anymore.

        Which is nice.

        1. So . . . George Floyd's suffering has concluded, while Officer Chauvin's continues to unfold -- and Chauvin's bigoted, slack-jawed supporters continue to get stomped into irrelevance in the culture war?

          Sounds good.

          Faux libertarians who celebrate abusive police officers are among my favorite culture war casualties.

          1. You get really triggered by that, huh little bitch face? 😀

            Look, while obsolete, viagra-dependent losers like you stay busy keeping track of their meaningless, self-defeating culture war tally like a bunch of retarded Larpers, the world keeps on turning, Bidens approval ratings continue to tank, police funding is up, BLM is in shambles and an inauthentic laughing stock and woke, disarmed whiners keep on sabotaging themselves while fighting for the 'good' cause (lol). And nobody cares about what clowns like you consider 'faux'.

          2. Oh and to be honest with you, I actually dont think any of this is a good thing, as opposed to you. All Im saying is that you better be careful because the schadenfreude game can backfire quite easily.

  3. >>Minnesota's felony murder rule is "a particularly weird form of it"

    does the legal dispute center on the law's unique structure?

  4. fyi, this was predicted months ago that this would be overturned, and was punctuated by a police officer who intentionally shot an unarmed innocent woman in the face who was also charged with this crime, and it was overturned as well.

    1. You bleating about Saint Babbitt again?

      If you guys are gonna keep whining about her, you could at least get the facts correct. She was shot in the shoulder, not the face.

      1. Shot in the shoulder,
        And you're to blame!
        You give revolt,
        A BAD name!

        I shouted out,
        "Who killed Saint Babbitt"?
        When after all,
        It was YOU and ME!

        I rode a tank,
        Held a Trumpist's rank,
        When the Shits-Krieg raged,
        And the bodies stank!

        What's my name?
        Who's on first?
        And if I swallow anything evil,
        Put your finger down my throat!

      2. She was shot in the shoulder, not the face.
        See? It wasn’t so bad.

        1. So she's only mostly dead? How cruel to have buried her like that then.

      3. Babbitt was shot in the left upper chest near the clavicle. While technically that is the shoulder, since the bullet was on an upward and left to right trajectory, the bullet ripped through her throat.

        She died choking on her own blood.

        1. Well, at least Saint Babbitt didn't get defaced, by the least of us! Government Almighty forbid that we should DEFACE Saint Babbitt, who shouldered the burdens of ALL of us! Hallowed be Her Name!

          1. Knock, knock.

            Who’s there?

            Not Ashli Babbitt. Not anymore.

            1. Did you cum in your dog's ass when you wrote that? Hot!

            2. Neither is your celebrated fentanyl addict. He will be forgotten like every other executive victim. He already has been forgotten for all practical matters and police funding is in good shape. So you shouldnt waste your viagra over the schadenfreude.

      4. No, you fuck. I'm talking about a Minnesota police officer that shot a fucking woman in the face who came up to speak to the officers while sitting in his patrol car. Do you even try to pay attention to events in the news?

        1. Oh, the pretty blonde. I wouldn't call what he did "intentional." She scared a scared guy with a gun in a dark alley. Sucks all around.

          1. You're...serious?

            Fucking hell.

            Perhaps if we burned down some cities, she'd get justice

    2. He shot a woman who was crawling through a barricades window, so so much for her being innocent. And there is no way he knew whether she, or any of the MAGAs in the mob behind her, were armed or not.

      1. Trespassing still isn't a Capitol offense. Especially when she is visibly unarmed. Sorry Mike.

        1. She was a burglar, not a trespasser.

          She played a stupid game. She won her stupid prize. She is no longer a stain and drain on American society.

          1. It's sad how you're obsessing about a dead person. You really need to get over the fact that the death of George Floyd hasn't changed anything and only deepened resentments, considering how it was handled by people like you. I dont know if you ever had good intentions at any point, but your butthurt about the way things are going at the moment is painfully obvious.

      2. No, you fuck. I'm talking about a Minnesota police officer that shot a fucking woman in the face who came up to speak to the officers while sitting in his patrol car. Do you even try to pay attention to events in the news?

    3. Also, Officer Byrd was never charged with anything. He was exonerated.

      1. He was not exonerated. They never took it to a grand jury dummy.

      2. No, you fuck. I'm talking about a Minnesota police officer that shot a fucking woman in the face who came up to speak to the officers while sitting in his patrol car. Do you even try to pay attention to events in the news?

      3. Officer Byrd? That yellow streak makes him Big Byrd. You two related? Caw Caw.

      4. "Also, Officer Byrd was never charged with anything. He was exonerated."

        Well, then. No problems at all.

        Why does Reason bitch about "qualified immunity" so much? Do they not know that if a cop is not charged with anything, then clearly nothing happened?

    4. Surprisingly the court didn't defer to Sharia law to overturn Noor's conviction. After all Justine Damond was tramping around in her pajamas unaccompanied by any male relatives.

  5. By the way, in breaking COVID vaccination news.

    Pfizer Assures That Vaccine Is Almost As Safe For Kids As COVID

  6. Who did the victims vote for? That's the only thing that matters.

    1. All the dead people vote Democrat.

      1. Whether they want to or not.

        1. Do dead people really vote Democrat? I honestly don't know! These questions are best addressed to the "Beyond the Beyond", which, I am told, is sometimes located right behind the "Bed, Bath, and Beyond"! But I don't know WHICH "Bed, Bath, and Beyond" is involved here!

          Try this:

          Your contact point for appealing for supernatural intervention or answers:
          Satan J. Trump
          1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
          Washington, D.C. 20500

          (Maybe He left a forwarding address. It’s the best I can do, sorry!)

          1. You know, SQRLSY. On occasion, you do get some decent satire going. I would suggest your nourish that talent by writing your own blog, where you can edit and refine your work. On these comment threads, it too often delves into trolling and random-humor.

  7. So, do I understand this correctly:

    Noor’s appeal could/should cause Chavin’s third degree murder conviction to be vacated. But, it won’t serve as a basis for vacating his second degree felony murder conviction (the bulk of his sentence) because his second degree manslaughter conviction will be affirmed, and because of Minnesota’s F’ed up felony murder laws and case law affirming them the second degree manslaughter (an assault felony) can be trumped up to a second degree felony murder charge based on zero additional elements, aggravations, or facts, and left solely to the whim of the prosecutor making the charging decision and the angry mobs that influence their charging decisions?

    All culminating with the white cop getting 10x the sentence for the unintentional killing (per the elements of the 2nd degree manslaughter conviction) of a black citizen who was on drugs and resisting arrest than a black cop gets for unintentionally killing (per the elements of the 2nd degree manslaughter conviction) a white citizen who was neither resisting nor engaged in any illegality. In the same jurisdiction and adjudicated pursuant to the exact same laws.

    1. Yes. And to handle that the state is refusing to fund a public defense attorney for his appeal of the 2nd degree charges so that the state Supreme Court doesn't let this happen again.

      1. "And to handle that the state is refusing to fund a public defense attorney for his appeal of the 2nd degree charges"

        Can they do that? Or does Miranda only apply to the initial trial?

        1. They deemed he had enough assets due to his wife (believe she divorced him) owning their old house. But it is no longer his asset and his debts are already more than the equity of the house.

  8. This underscores the advantage of the death sentence. Chauvin's slow, deliberate murder under color of law enforcement, recorded and replayed with no possibility of mistaken identity, is precisely what the death sentence is designed for. That it offers a lowering of taxes by not robbing the public for room and board for this particular thug is an added advantage. The LP needs to get rid of vandalism planks added to the platform ater 2016 so that we may again defend principles as in our original platform--only with more'n 4 million votes again.

    1. Using a police department approved restraint is "slow deliberate murder?" And the obvious medical distress before restraint as well as the presence of several times the lethal amounts of opiates and methamphetamine in the restrained suspect doesn't create reasonable doubt about the cause of death?

      1. Libtards celebrate the death of a random black male like it was a precursor to ultimate change when everyone else has moved on already and police funding is up and the marxists at BLM have already lost all popularity and credibility. Leftists like HP are as deluded as it gets and, like good progressives, never fail to instrumentalize a minority for their narratives.

      2. “ Zimmerman, who has been with the MPD since 1985 and in the homicide unit he now leads since 1995, said department policy requires that prone suspects who are handcuffed — as Floyd was by Chauvin — must be taken off their chest as soon as possible. The position stretches the chest muscles and makes it difficult for someone to breathe, Zimmerman said.

        Frank asked Zimmerman whether he was ever trained to put a knee on the neck of someone in handcuffs." No, I haven't," he said.

        Zimmerman said such a tactic would fall under the most extreme level of force by an officer, that being "deadly force."”

        Not department approved restraint.

      3. Throwdown pistols and throwdown medical examiner reports are nothing new. Anyone who believes in birchin birth, Lazarus rising from the maggots and plant leaves as the Avatars of Satan and Assassins of Youth can be counted on to believe brown people swallow pounds of smack and methedrine to get in the mood to pass crude counterfeit bills. "Your Honor, my client FOUND that dead black man dead from dope and lying in the street, honest!"

  9. "The mental state necessary for depraved-mind murder," the court said, "is a generalized indifference to human life and—based on our precedent—cannot exist when the defendant's conduct is directed with particularity at the person who is killed."

    Isn't that the general attitude of most cops to the general populace? All they seem to see is a mass of disobedient subjects to boss around.

    1. Isn’t that the general attitude of most cops politicians to the general populace?

      YES

  10. So gunning down a completely innocent person for no reason is manslaughter if the person is White. But restraining an overdosing and resisting felon who then dies of unclear causes is murder if that person is Black.

    Got it. Fair and impartial justice.

    1. In the case of Ashli Babbitt’s murder, no charges at all.

      1. Three problems. Cop was black so he’s ok
        Second problem Ashli was white and third a Trump supporter.
        Thus she deserved it

        1. Ashli didn’t “deserve it”, but it was a justified shooting considering she was climbing through a barricaded window at the head of an angry mob with apparent intent to harm the Vice President of the United States, members of Congress, and their staff and guests.

          And don’t bring up the “she was unarmed” b.s. There is no way the police guarding that door could ascertain, in the heat of the battle-like scenario, whether anyone in the violent mob was armed or not.

          1. Have you fucking bothered to watch any of the newly released videos or do you prefer utter leftist ignorance?

            1. I doubt you care much about an ignorant, downscale nobody like Ashli Babbitt. You're just generally disaffected and antisocial because modern, successful America's liberal-libertarian has rejected your bigoted, superstitious, obsolete, conservative political positions.

              1. I doubt you care much about an ignorant, downscale nobody like George Floyd. You’re just generally disaffected and antisocial because free, successful, armed Americans with a spine have rejected your bigoted, authoritarian, woke political positions and continue to enjoy their firearms and economic freedoms against your will.

          2. I've been hearing for months that Babbitt was climbing through a window. I've seen 2 or 3 different camera angles but none of her actually climbing through a window.

            Do you have that video? I'd like someone to actually corroborate this window climbing claim with some actual evidence.

    2. Go read or reread "Bonfire of the Vanities".

    3. Ain't it odd the surveillance cams, cellphones and cop cams ALL got their files photochopped to delete the scenes where Floyd stopped on the sidewalk, mainlined a huge bag of dopiate and then proceeded to vape, snort, eat and shoot deadly doses of speed before rassling them cops? The same Rooshian... (or were they Chicom?) hackers that robbed The Don of his rightful Throne must have a finger in all evidentiary data in These Sovereign States. So what did Garner OD on before cops killed him? Cigarettes?

  11. Chauvin in my opinion failed to recognize when the arrest went bad and that mr floyd was in need of medical attention. He failed to switch gears. He was negligent in that fact. You cab hear the other officers say we should get off him or turn him over. Chauvin failed to see that the situation had become life threatening. He did not wake up that day to intentially murder someone. The medical exam shows that floyd had an underlying condition that in my opinion caused his death due to use of illegal drugs. Chauvin deserved jail time just not 20 years. He deserved 5 years in prison for stupidity

    1. Didn’t help his cause to be on video with a sadistic smirk on his face.

      1. Mike is for 20 years for his body reading capabilities.

        1. I bet he thought the Covington Kids deserved their death threats et all, too. Fucking kids thinking they have a right to be a in a public place and all...

    2. Another underlying condition was the amount of Fentanyl along with other drugs He had consumed shortly before being arrested. That and the counterfeit $20 bill he attempted to pass off. Being stupid is one thing but being stupid while committing a criminal act is quite another.
      Even if the police had not intervened, Floyd would have joined the list of the thousands of people who O.D. from this drug. He would have only been another blip in the news if at all. He would have been another statistic. He is, however, another statistic in the Fentanyl epidemic.

    3. That's the thing. A manslaughter charge is reasonable given the situation. Neither murder charge should ever have been brought, and it's a severe miscarriage of justice that they were. There is zero indication that Chauvin had any intention to kill, which any small child knows is the difference between manslaughter and murder.

      It was a worse miscarriage that the jury was actively threatened into returning a guilty verdict. Because of those threats, we can't trust the verdict. Given that the state is actively colluding to deny Chauvin representation at the appeals courts, this just undermines trust in the courts, and people justifiably believe that access to justice is dependent on political favor.

  12. It’s black privilege. Black cop OK white cop not

  13. There is nothing wrong with the felony murder charge. All charges can be abused - and are frequently enough. When a gang goes out to do a robbery and they all know that two of them have guns, they all know that someone may die. None of them are innocent bystanders - all volunteered to take part in a crime that may end with murder. And so, all are, to some degree, responsible. If you want to take a few years off the sentence for felony murder, fine. Just don't say there's anything inherently wrong with the concept. The driver who sits outside while the store manager is shot to death is guilty of taking part in that murder. Fuck him.

    1. You are missing the point. Nobody is blanket criticizing felony murder. However, most jurisdictions, unlike MINN, require there to be a felony independent of the assault that caused the death. In your example, the robbery is such an independent felony. Nobody is criticizing that. In this case, the manslaughter felony is the only felony to support the felony murder. This leads to both: (a) drastically disparate charging and sentence disparity for comparable conduct; and (b) extremely harsh punishment without an intentional, foreseeable (to cause death) act independent of the unintentional killing.

  14. Floyd died of a fentanyl overdose, but left wing media propagandists and Democrats (led by their BLM thugs) falsely accused Chauvin of murder 24/7 until left wing MN AG Keith Ellis (who beat up his former girlfriend, which the news media failed to report) charged Chauvin with murder.

    And while BLM, Antifa, Democrats and left wing media propagandists claimed (and continue to claim) George Floyd's death was a result of systemic white racist police brutality, there was no evidence that Chauvin said or did anything that could be deemed racist.

    1. You sound cranky, Bill Godshall. Has getting stomped by your betters in the culture war made you such an antisocial jerk, or were you born a right-wing misfit?

      1. You're really triggered and butthurt, Arthur, and maybe rightfully so. But you continue to handle it like the most infantile, defeated crybaby I have ever seen. You are a present to conservatives.

    2. Ah yes the magical overdose with symptoms precisely opposite of traditional opioid overdoses, that strike at the exact moment you're having your breathing restrained by a cop, and don't respond to massive adrenaline rushes like traditional opioid overdoses.

      1. They didn't strike exactly the moment he was being restrained by a cop. He said 'I can't breathe' long before he even got out of the car.

        Please stop spreading misinformation and sounding whiny while you do so. Thank you.

    3. Is Godshan't saying Chauvin was injecting Floyd with a fatal amount of forfeited assets from some other shakedown? Was that what Chauvin was doing with his hand in his pocket as he asphyxiated the victim? Where did he get a needle that long? Was there a competing, non-cop-union autopsy report? Inquiring minds want to know!

  15. I'm not educated whatsoever in the legal field besides the little bit in High School and some basic stuff in the Corrections Academy.
    But personally I'm getting tired of the legal minds inside our Justice Department making decisions based on public outcry. They have guidelines in the Constitution and set by Congress to use in those situations.
    They got a tough job sure, but that's what America expects you to do. Biasness is totally unacceptable in the system of our laws and yet it is rapid throughout the land.. If you can't handle that get in another field, because you're the reason why the world is laughing at the clown show you've made out of our Nations law.

    1. Yeah. Basically, doing justice is not easy when a mob gets involved. But it ignoring it does not make one's actions just.

  16. Chauvin was the human sacrifice offered up by our Justice System to appease the Social Justice crowd, who are nothing more than Vigilantes determined to serve up their form of mob justice. That is not the way the law is supposed to work in the United Sates, but a weak AG Barr, and the power and position hungry rest of the Justice System, from the DA, to the Prosecutors, to Judge Cahill saw to it that Chauvin was given a far harsher sentence than he deserved. The other officers involved are scheduled to be tried in March, 2022. At least one of their attorneys is challenging the murder charges because he says Floyd was not murdered. What a dilemma for the DA! If this attorney prevails, what happens to Chauvin's murder conviction if no murder occurred?

  17. Assault is just about the only thing that's even reasonable as a predicate for holding someone accountable for an "unintended" death.

    It's the other applications that are way out on a limb, situations where an individual didn't expect or participate in the lethal action.

    But this sounds like more auth-right conservatism masquerading as libertarianism from Jacob 'evidence burdens only apply to opinions I disagree with' Sullum. Giving the commenters what they want I expect.

    1. Waitaminnit... Is fafa-cop-puppet telling us Floyd got his fatal fix of illegal dope from Sullum? So why didn't the cop cams record that transaction? If Sullum spraypainted the security cams, administered Floyd the throwdown dope, then cleaned all those lenses with paint thinner in time to record Chauvin's heroic efforts to save the poor guy from his own vices and twist that into some kind of attack on the First Responders™ God's Own Party Platform is dedicated to, what the Hell is he doing writing for Reason? The guy could do special effects for Keano movies in a whole different tax bracket!

    2. I have to disagree with you. The classic example is committing armed robbery. You don't take guns to rob a bank and then get to claim innocence when your partner shoots someone. Some things are reasonably foreseeable.

      However, the felony murder rule by its design does require there to be an independent crime. An assault cannot be the basis of felony murder of the person you assaulted. Otherwise, manslaughter and other degrees of murder don't exist. This is a clear mistake in drafting of the law, and the courts should not allow prosecutors to exploit the error to trump up charges against people.

  18. Floyd died of a fentanyl overdose.

    1. .....with a side of knee to the neck.

  19. Felony Murder Rule is a stinky cologne!

  20. The drug addict thug doesnt have a back to worry about anymore.

  21. Guy was not murdered. He died of a HEART ATTACK brought on by years hard drug use. Besides, he pistol whipped a pregnant woman.

  22. While Derek Chauvin should be in prison, Minnesota law is weird and corrupt. Reading the various laws, it is difficult to understand how Derek Chauvin can be guilty of all the charges. Some more than others, but they also conflict with each other.

    Personally I was hoping that Derek Chauvin was found guilty of some of the charges and not all because it would imply that the jury actually was attempting to fairly judge the man. Instead he was found guilty of every charge in record time.

    It appears that the trial was simple a show trial going through the motions, that had to result in the expected guilty otherwise the city would burn.

    Although the Noor case didn't hit the national news to the same degree that George Floyd did, there was a similar outcry. In both cases "White, Caucasian Women" were out on the streets protesting in mass and constituted the majority of the outraged.

    Having conversations to many of these "White, Caucasian Women", they didn't react logically, but rather through a purely emotional fashion. They didn't wait for information to come forth and were seeking vengeance instead of justice.

    In the Noor case, there appears to have been either negligence or simply a stupid act by the police officer, but no intent to do harm. Unfortunately a person died due to the circumstances. There should be high standards for Police Officers and they should not have Qualified Immunity (neither should anyone else).

    Citizens also need to make smarter decisions and not place themselves into difficult situations where the probability of incidents like these increase. Both should be more responsible.

  23. The fact the Floyd had consumed enough fentanyl to kill three people along with other drugs apparently has been lost on a lot of people. Even without police intervention, Floyd would have O.D. a short time later. His death wouldn't even raise a blip in the news. it would have been just another statistic of the fentanyl scourge.
    As it is he has become for some weird reason a hero...maybe to all those drug addicts, habitual criminals and common thugs.
    His images painted on walls in other cities seem to attract a lot of lightning strikes.
    The Taliban painted over one. So where's BLM on that one?
    Floyd was just another common street thug. An habitual criminal with a long record of arrests and convictions, one for a violent home invasion.
    People like him never learn. They usually end up living a shorter life span than most.

  24. I still do not see any compelling arguments for any criminal charges. Nobody disputes Floyd's drug overdose or medical condition. We have him ODing on body-cam a bit over half an hour before he was restrained prone with a knee on his neck. There is no compelling evidence suggesting that Floyd would be alive today had he not been restrained in this manner. Video evidence does not lie. He said he couldn't breathe throughout the entire process.

    Chauvin's superior, Zimmerman, was ignorant of the facts of the case. He decided to protect the MPD and sacrifice Chauvin, but again, video doesn't lie. He claimed knees to the neck are deadly force, that you don't need to restrain someone further once cuffed, that he should have sat him on the curb or stood him up, all of which happened in the 30+ minutes of bodycam and dashcam footage prior to the more infamous 9 minutes.

    What if nobody did anything at all? Would that have been acceptable? I doubt it. You would probably criticize the MPD for refusing to administer aid while waiting for paramedics.

    What would you have done in this situation? Keep in mind that if you were Chauvin and co, you would be aware of the following facts:

    1. Subject is currently overdosing
    2. Subject is in an agitated state as they have not calmed down over a 30 minute period, situation has not improved regardless of all prior styles of restraint, and resisted arrest
    3. Subject is likely to go into cardiac arrest
    4. Crowd is actively involved and could become a threat
    5. You already called for EMS and they are on the way

    Can you honestly say that we wouldn't even know George Floyd's name if the police did nothing? I can say we wouldn't know his name if the police were never called, but then Floyd would just be another statistic because more likely than not, he would have died anyways.

    Nobody would have fared better unless they were both a police officer and a trained EMS carrying Narcan. The lack of discussion of such subjects in Chauvin's trial was deeply disturbing. Why are we jailing officers for doing what we told and trained them to do? If you want different outcomes, change the situation on the ground. Don't sacrifice police for answering the call.

    Where are the calls to legalize recreational drug use to help de-stigmatize addiction so people like Floyd can seek treatment freely?

    Many want to blame Chauvin, but deep down, that desire to blame comes from the fact society is guilty of creating this tragedy. Chauvin is our scapegoat. We're all to blame.

  25. Diversity = Divisiveness
    You want diversity? You got it! Consequences? A fragmenting, declining nation on fire. A 6'5" homely, hulking thug intoxicated on illegal drugs and resisting arrest immediately after committing a crime becomes a national hero. What more needs to be said?

    Is there a remedy to the ruin? Yes, as described in detail in the novel, Retribution Fever. A scientific remedy. Will Americans adopt it? Do most even care?

    Well, folk, the Chinese have adopted it to impose tyranny. They're winning. We're losing. That's a fact. Proof? One picture of our girls in uniform fleeing Afghanistan.

  26. When one considers that Minneapolis' homicide rate skyrocketed 116% and Ilan Omar blames the police for it, then one has to also wonder about the intelligence of that congresscritter.
    Her statement is an effort to shift the blame for the out of control homicides in that city on to the police is nothing more than a Marxist style attempt at diverting the blame from those who committed the homicides onto those who would at the very least arrest those who committed the murders and provide at least some form of deterrence.
    Remove the deterrence and see what results you end up with.

    The demographics of Minneapolis was changed dramatically when huge numbers of Somalians were imported in order to change the voting demographics.
    The liberals reap what they sow.

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