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tv   Al Jazeera World Iraqs Dying Rivers  Al Jazeera  April 20, 2021 11:00pm-12:01am +03

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on the top there straight ahead there are 3 individuals in very rare to see that it's really exciting the season of programming exploring the climate crisis ahead of the earth day on. her hand in the early. the minneapolis jury reaches a verdict in the trial of derek chauvin the former police officer accused of killing george floyd. hello i'm barbara sara this is al jazeera live from london also coming up a military council is in charge and a curfew in place in chad after the president dies in fighting just the day after he was reelected more than 100000 russian troops are now amassed at the border with
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ukraine and in crimea calls grow for moscow to be sanctioned and a massive public backlash to plans for a european football super league with reports that a number of clubs are on the fur jiggles pulling out. we begin the program with breaking news from the u.s. where a jury has reached a verdict in the trial of former minneapolis police officer there rick show than it will be read in court in about 30 minutes sherman is accused of killing george floyd after kneeling on his neck for more than 9 minutes he is charged with 2nd degree unintentional murder sir a degree murder and 2nd degree manslaughter floyd's death last year sparked a global wave of protests against racial injustice and police brutality john
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hendren is following the trial for us in minneapolis john we were always expecting the verdict there was no telling when the jury was going to come back but it didn't take them very long did it. know in the speed of this verdict suggests the jury is trying to tell us something they're trying to tell us that this was a relatively easy decision. arrived at speedily with very little rancor at least that is what the lawyers i've spoken to say and i've spoken to a defense lawyer and a prosecutor and both of them agree that in general when a jury comes down with a verdict this quick it often favors the prosecution there are counter examples in the case of the o.j. simpson trial when he was accused of killing his wife nicole that jury took just 4 hours to acquit him they were also sending a message that message was that that was an easy decision for them if you can see
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there's a fair amount of traffic is soon as it was announced that we were going to have a decision and that decision is due to come down in about an hour and a half we're told cars started leaving downtown minneapolis one would think that is apparently out of fear that there might be either riots in the street if people are unhappy or celebrations in the street if people are happy so we are waiting for that verdict in an hour and a half or so we don't know exactly what it will be but we do know that the jury reached it with unusual speed in less than 24 hours and we will we will deliver that verdict as soon as it's given but once it is the entire world will know whether derek chauvin is guilty of either murder or manslaughter and of course the entire world has been interested in this case and in the u.s. it's been headline news since it started so much so that president biden actually
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got in touch with george floyd's family didn't. i'm sorry barbara i just lost the audio there but yes we are expecting that president biden will react to that you'll probably hear from our kimberly hellcat when that happens but i am told it in the press room right now in the upper press level the white house that. they are meeting and. apparently waiting to hear the result like the rest of us and then they will formulate the white house response to that but the real response will be delivered here in the streets not just in minneapolis where national guard troops have descended on this city but also in other cities chicago washington d.c. chicago you had massive riots after george floyd was killed on may 25th and washington d.c. you also had conflicts between protests protesters and police so both of those
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cities now have national guard troops in them is well this is truly a national phenomenon and we're all on pins and needles waiting for that decision in 90 minutes. john hendren outside the courthouse across live back to you when we do get the verdict for the moment thank you let's go to elsewhere in minneapolis because of course the city has become the center of attention that's going to she have been at red tand see as you have tell us where and who you're with. well i'm actually on the other side of the courthouse john as john was a few blocks up we're actually outside the courthouse which as you can see is heavily fortified now the have been county government center and i think this is taken everyone by surprise just how rapidly this came not least the protesters in fact there's only one solitary woman with a black lives flag over there who is when the announcement came was mobbed by press in fact we had one of those absurd press scenes where if we look around us it's
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basically all journalists and press who had a house surrounding the courthouse and i guess we'll await the verdict and we'll await the protesters and people to get more more reaction but there's clearly a lot quicker than any of us really expected not least the protesters but obviously as you can see from the barricades the the authorities have been preparing for this for some time in fact increasingly what we've been seeing is the protests are not just about police brutality they're also about the way in which protests about police brutality are being policed and this morning we were actually right here and there was a demonstration with civil rights leaders who were saying look this is just way this is a protest about over policing over militarization escalation when deescalation should be the should be the watchword of security forces and what we've seen all week and we've certainly witness firsthand has been over policing escalation in
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front of in the face off what have been very passionate but peaceful on the whole protest and i think that's what we're really worried about to be honest from this from this vantage point is no matter what the verdict is how will the thousands of national guard troops that have been drafted in by the government the thousands of police from all over the state state patrol. and others how they're going to react to either jubilation or or anger i think that is the great unknown and i think. what we're a little worried about but it was interesting i was listening to a relative of joe's floor this morning and she was saying she was it was an amazing turn she said she was pessimistically optimistic and i don't know i guess that might be given what john was just saying about house. the jury has come to a decision and how in the past at least that has favored the prosecution that idea
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of pessimistic optimism may be in play here but having said that we all do that in the face appears to be the lay person pretty clear evidence of wrongdoing or brutality does not always results in a conviction you mentioned joe biden yes his comments have become a bit controversial actually because he said he was praying for the right verdict which i think is overwhelming in my view and he said he would have made those comments if the jury hadn't been sequestered he's coming under fire for actually having having made any comment about this but there is that it's. a half minute video very clearly lays out a case for for behavior that is not appropriate for a police officer to give of course we heard the defense lawyer say to you about the 60 minutes 59 the proceeded that 9 minutes 29 we will have to see whether the jury takes that into account too and i suppose what was key about that video and i suppose more generally when we talk about police brutality is that now increasingly
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there are more videos in cases like both of course the camera video of the officers but the video taken by all those bystanders that realized something was wrong and started filming. and there's always a hollow feeling whenever we cover these stories about how many people weren't being videoed but not any of that how many people as a pulling is george george floyd is he died so that's why we hear about it how many people were video who held on the ground for 9 minutes 29 seconds close to suffocation effectively allegedly being tortured by a police officer but they survived so they were just arrested for it into jail i mean there's so many questions about this but yes obviously the video evidence is key and that has changed things because before and in fact still even when there is video evidence a police officer cam in most cases simply say i was in fear of my life you were bad i had to make a split 2nd decision on the jury will be instructed to say well that's it if the
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police officer feels fear then they should be a question of any and the wrong doing now in this case a big chunk of the prosecution goes well that did derek shaven look like a man in fear was the whether bystanders threatening him and so on and the defense kept saying yes that was the case we have the video evidence for ourselves in fact the prosecution called the bystanders i believe what a bouquet of humanity for actually coming forward filming and then testifying in order to write what they felt was an injustice but that was in the in the face of the in the of the defense case which was no this was a crowd that meant derek chauvelin had to act as he did he couldn't get what would seem the natural thing to do which is give any medical help to george floyd as he lay pleading for his life because he was too frightened of those around him he was in fear of his life that again as always is the defense case for a police officer and it usually works well let's see. we well she had her 10
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see what the latest in minneapolis she had sank you. let's go to the behinds now who is a former baltimore city prosecutor and a trial lawyer she joins us live via skype from washington d.c. madam thank you so much for joining us here on. or now obviously we're going to find out soon enough but considering the 45 witnesses that this 3 week long trial what do you make of the fact that it didn't take the jury that long to come back to come with a verdict i'm actually surprised but there was plenty of evidence for the jury to reach their verdict course we don't know what it is but the prosecution really put on a phenomenal case and i say that as a former prosecutor and it doesn't always happen that way i mean they had the luck of having the 9 minute 29 2nd video as well as the witnesses that were there that their children claimed he was feared for so i just believe that you know the jury
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had everything what is interesting though i will say is that as far as i know the jury never need it that's a question which is you know someone can be rare because sometimes jurors had questions about the legal instructions because they're not just as sobbing then derek should have been killed george floor way they're following all the elements of the crime that make it the man 2nd degree murder 3rd degree murder and 2nd degree manslaughter and sometimes they can get hung up on the legal definitions and they did not so they were able to work through work through the testimony of 45 witnesses and as gary blackwell said prosecutor blackwell said in his closing they were obviously able to use the $46.00 witness which was their own commonsense when they went in that yuri room so i'm hopeful that they will render a guilty verdict what impact do you think the intense national and international
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attention on this case will have had on this trial well this is not the 1st case that's had. at least national attention you know back in 2012 was the trayvon martin case and that had national attention and that still ended up being a not guilty verdict but i think that with george florey i think these jurors as all jurors should do know that this case is extremely important it is extremely important even though it is only derek show when it is a long trial and that's what the prosecutor said but in reality police brutality is on trial right up there with derek show that so i think that they understood that and i do believe that they worked meticulously to reach the verdict that they're going to bring to in about a half an hour. we are of course waiting for that verdict and that behind it would be good to get your reaction to it when we get it for the moment behinds former
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baltimore city prosecutor and trial lawyer madam thank you. thank you. ok so we are expecting that verdict in just under 20 minutes we will take you live to minneapolis when it comes for the moment though let's take a look at some of the day's other news it greases debut was one of africa's longest running leaders officially winning his 6th term in office on monday but a day later he was dead killed on the frontline in a battle with rebels in the restive north of the country now his son has taken charge named interim leader by a council of military officers now this could be a popular move with western nations and see the government as a key player in the fight against on groups the continuity is unlikely to please the opposition which has long seen that his rule as oppressive and with concerns about security growing a nationwide nighttime curfew has been imposed morgan reports.
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this was chat's president idriss deby campaigning last week early election results indicated he'd won a 6th term in office but debi had reportedly joined his son and other soldiers on saturday to repel an attack by a rebel group in the northern province of new to border with libya according to the military he was severely injured and on monday it announced his passing it says it's created a transitional military council led by debbi son and has suspended the constitution our union a transitional government will be put in place new republican institutions will be put in place to facilitate the transition by the organization of free democratic and transparent elections following the spirit of sacrifice that the marshal of charted for for all his life right up until his last suffering. in the capital where people celebrated deputy election victory the night before the announcement there were mixed reactions. it sad news the presidential elections went off
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peacefully through to the declaration of results by the old. commission and then the next day we learn the sad news of the death of the president after being injured badly at the front lines it's sad news for the entire country. when i was in the news a surprising i moved by the rumors that are going around about the chances of a consul give me the impression that some information is false they already talking about dissolving parliament that is delicate we have a constitution so for me i'd say it was a coup and he was killed it greece debbie was a former military officer who came to power in 1990 he faced numerous coup attempts and his opposition accused him of ruthlessness the rebel front for change and concord group wanted to remove debbie as president it attacked a government position at the border on election day on april 11th chad's closest ally france provided its military with logistical support and intelligence it seems
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like the. removal debbie has not changed the military situation and as long as the military remains largely boil to his son which seems likely to be the case given that he used to be the commander of the presidential guard and the chair you know his best units he's a 4 star general is only 37 years old. if he can keep that loyalty then there's no way the rebellion can take advantage of that anymore and they could have under his father more than 300 rebel fighters have reportedly been killed in the fighting to or in the past few days that president debbie has now also died in the fighting has shocked a nation and made the security situation in the wider style region even more fragile he will morgan al-jazeera. ukraine's foreign minister has warned that will soon be more than 120000 russian troops on the soviet country's borders. demitra quebec has called for more western sanctions the e.u. stopped diplomatic just at the borrow call that the largest russian army deployment
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in the area ever the move comes as russian media reports that 20 of the country's warships have participated in military exercises in the black sea barnett smith is in moscow and says the russians are clearly showing the strength of their capabilities. there is a recently published satellite images showing what is a very serious buildup of military hardware in and around crimea and ukraine we've seen pictures of fighter jets lined up on a runway in crimea we've seen pictures of born troops army units attack helicopters smoke generators. jamming equipment reconnaissance drones and a military hospital and the e.u. and u.s. estimate this between 82100000 ground troops along the ukraine russia border russia says all of this the defense minister sergei short who is because nato and the u.s. are indulged in provocative activities in waters and airspace around the black sea
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he doesn't say what those provocative activities are exactly and he says these are long planned military drills also russia's prime planning to restrict access through that curch strait that is good they're going to stop they say milot naval vessels going through that strait that provides a link for ukraine to its eastern ports and there is a treaty between russia and ukraine that says those waters the hours of sea in the strait are supposed to be freely accessible to both sides so the ukrainians would see that as a provocation but russia says this is all a military exercise but whatever it is it is a very clear demonstration of russia's military capabilities in and around ukraine in crimea. for doctors say they've been prison prevented from seeing the jailed russian opposition politician alexina valmy who's been on hunger strike for 3 weeks
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his personal physician says they were denied entry after waiting for hours at the prison hospital another of these doctors says he could be at risk of a heart attack while his general health is the teary orating mass protests are planned by supporters on wednesday to coincide with an address by president putin. it's growing again now with the prime minister has called off a planned trip to portugal next month because of the covert $1000.00 crisis this comes as the country reported another new record number of daily deaths more than 7800 the capital is already in lockdown with mumbai set to follow later this week and there's elizabeth poor and then reports from new delhi thousands of migrant workers are trying to flee. just hours after delis local government announced a weeklong curfew thousands of migrant workers rushed to bus and train stations they squeeze their way onto buses climbing on top of each other and onto the roofs
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the closing down of all but essential services has seen many workers lose their livelihoods i've been getting like the. chief minister has said that nobody needs to leave delhi ask him where would daily wage earners like us go what will we do they earn in the same day if they don't earn in the day they can't have a mulek night we will be go if not home these are the same questions which were asked during the nationwide lock down a gear ago it led to 100000000 migrant workers returning to their home states after losing their jobs millions had to go hundreds died on the journey there's some ladies that. lost them. completely dispensable. for the government for the middle class and for the rich and i think this is up a bit with. what we have begun the. harsh mander is petitioning the supreme
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court to force the government to provide basic services to daily wage earners delhi's high court has asked the local government to divert hundreds of millions of dollars of public money to ensure workers who've lost their jobs don't go hungry it said both the central and state governments failed in their responsibility to protect days. as last year and asked why they haven't made plans to do better. the high court also said the capital's health care capacity is at the stage of imminent collapse health experts say it's likely the double mutant variation of the virus which has been found in india that's causing infections to rise much more rapidly than last year we've seen systematic increase give across india mordred with the thing that what might be happening is that something that is more transfer between people you believe could be moving through the population of people who are yet to contract infection and therefore 34th to. health organization and
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governments around the world to monitor and what's happening in india as concerns grow about the sprint of this variant elizabeth brannon al-jazeera new delhi. ok well let's take you back to minneapolis that breaking news coming to us from the united states that the jury in the derek chauvin trial for the killing of george floyd has reached a verdict and we should be hearing that verdict in the next 10 minutes or so the jury has returned you can see those shots they are of course images of the many shocking videos that we've seen of those 9 minutes and the half where derek chauvin kept his knee on george floyd's neck let me just remind you of the charges the barrick chauvin is facing now the 1st charge is unintentional 2nd
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degree murder with a penalty of up to 40 years in prison now for this prosecutors have to prove that conduct was a substantial causal factor in george floyd's desk and shove and was actually committing felony assault at the time so that would be for 2nd degree murder. he's also charged with surrogate degree murder that means that his actions actually caused floyd's dest with recklessness and disregard for human life and then the lesser charge was 2nd degree manslaughter which just required proof that chauvin caused george floyd's death sidhu negligence so those are the ssri charges and we do know that the jury has reached a verdict well just there as john hendren is has been following the trial for the past 3 weeks for us in minneapolis and it is outside the courthouse now another jury that really deliberate for that long considering this 3 week trial tell us
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a little bit about what the atmosphere is like outside the courthouse now. where there's been a sudden flurry of activity we've seen people heading toward the courthouse ready for whatever that verdict is and then we've seen vehicles going the other direction trying to leave town and avoid the potential chaos could ensue we are told by the pool reporters inside the courthouse that derek show of and his lawyer erik nilsson or inside of the building they're getting ready for that verdict with in just a matter of minutes. and there is a lot of speculation about the speed with which the jury came to a verdict i believe it was about 10 hours some of it yesterday on monday some of it today on tuesday but generally the lawyers tell me they that tends to favor the prosecution but it's not always the case the one message that it really gives is
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that the jury did not have a really difficult time deciding what the facts were in this case you've got 3 complicated sets of charges there and as you just ticked off each of them has a different level of proof so you would expect it to take some time for the jury to try to go through those and determine one. the appropriate charges were whether they were set toward guilt or innocence one of the lawyers i spoke to said he would not be surprised to hear a verdict of guilty on all counts because of the speed with which this came up now we've been surprised before there was the o.j. simpson case where in 4 hours that jury came back and said he was not guilty with a unanimous verdict and of course that what we have to remember here the fact that the jury has come back means all 12 of them have agreed on a verdict whether that is guilt or innocence and there was always concern that there might be a hung jury that you might have
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a juror or 2 who simply would not go along with the rest of them well apparently that is not what is happening here and you can see this is a stream of cars headed to the courthouse behind me there. so we are all waiting and anxious and we expect that whatever happens in the streets of minneapolis this will be a night either of disappointment or a night of celebration. at any rate so this they want to be prepared 3000 members of the minnesota national guard alongside the police i have basically ad been deployed to try to keep the city safe so there is some worry that the could be unrest after the verdict. that's true and we hear a little hint of that when we had just days ago the police fatal shooting of dante right in the nearby town of brooklyn center that has generated 70 days of
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protests there and then is only about 15 kilometers from here so really the protesters that you see here are the same ones that have gone there and this video learn the hard way that sometimes you need to staff up the numbers in order to be able to control the crowds here in the 1st days of the protests over george floyd's death in may. those police were overwhelmed with protesters and there were angry incidents of looting and rioting along with the largely peaceful protests that we saw in the daytime but it's not just limited been any hapless there are national guard troops in washington d.c. lingering from the january 6th attack on the capital and in chicago governor j.b. pritzker has called in 150 national guard troops there to supplement hundreds and hundreds of chicago police and here in minneapolis police leave has been canceled
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the schools have been canceled for the rest of the week so as you can imagine this city is veering up for a response to that the only question is what that response will be. and though it john stay with us we can see some live pictures the other side of the courthouse from where you're standing people obviously a gathering there and members of the media as well those are people of cameras but a lot of people there have gathered waiting for the verdict which has been reached by the jury as john just remind us what was the main arguments of both the prosecution and the defense. will you outline what those charges were. the elements of those charges that the things that the prosecution had to prove were really very simple they were a variant show of and caused the death of george lloyd the prosecution says he absolutely did and they use
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a number of witnesses largely medical witnesses to show that he put his knee on george boy's neck and away that according to prosecution witnesses cut off his air pipe and then that ended up ending his brain function and his art which ultimately gave out and that death was ruled a homicide so they had some support in the medical examiner's report and the other thing they had to prove was that shoving was not within his rights to be using deadly force in that case and the big argument there was that about halfway or less through the 9 and a half minutes when he had his knee on george floyd's neck george was no longer moving no longer resisting what we saw a stream of prosecution police tactical side witnesses who said that that was inappropriate and that included the chief of police so if this is a guilty conviction the 2 elements that they will have proved to the satisfaction of the jury are that derek show been killed george floyd and that he was not within
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his rights to use the force that he used one of the things that we also heard when you talk about negligence in that manslaughter charge one of the things we heard was that medical witnesses and police witnesses said that a police officer in minneapolis is obligated to render aid to someone who is in their custody if they are in medical distress and we saw that derrick shows and did not do that and we saw at one point another officer checks the pulse of george floyd and comes up with nothing still shows and did not get off awful sloyd until the paramedics came and carried his lifeless body away so those are really the elements of the case the defense argued that something else killed george floyd in . probable is that might seem and they threw up the possibilities of this he had clogged arteries they brought up drugs that were in his system methamphetamine and fenton know and they also even brought up the possibility that a car exhaust contributed to his get the idea. that he would have died that night
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anyway well we'll see a matter of minutes whether that argument flew with the jury we will indeed john hendren for the moment assange q let's cross to the other side of the courthouse and speak to al-jazeera as as she had breath tand see who is there where several protesters have a gathering kind of things are they saying what is their reason for for being outside the courthouse now. are we still in that situation where the protest is of doubt numbered by the media but there is no trans of like lives mounted on the way in the crowd anyone with a flag or anything is immediately surrounded by tens of press members of the press with their cameras out but clearly i mean i'm just a to repeat what i was saying. about the sentiment of being pessimistically
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optimistic that we heard from a member of. george bush family this morning does seem to sum things up because i was drawn into the saying of the speed off the off the decision but i think what's also about pessimism isn't just about the verdict it's about the reaction of the security forces who've been drafted in from across the state and actually the governor of minnesota is even the domestic emergency service draw on the resources of ohio in the brosco as well in fact we were out this week at the school this morning and there was a protest again not just about the killing of george floyd the killer of police brutality but the manner in which the state has has policed the outpouring of grief and the and the outpouring of. collective resolution that things have to chase each because it has been john is mentioning it before we even jewelry this trial another 20 year old black man was killed by a police officer last last week and that led to various protests in brooklyn center
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about 16 kilometers north of where way are and we saw it firsthand the police the plans for policing the aftermath of a derrick show been voted protectively brought up they were they were they were immediately put into place in this tiny little suburb 16 kilometers north of us so they descended upon by thousands of troops national guard state troopers and others who proceeded to do what we often see which is allow protest up to a point but them. going to random point in the evening they would suddenly start firing tear gas flash bangs rubber bullets even as the man on the city council voted that that they should not be allowed to be used against peaceful peaceful protesters what we also saw was an actively targeting the media we were detained at one point as well it was something i've never seen actually in all my all the is of covering these sorts of protests the governor has said that he's they'll do better now that they won't react in such
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a way but i think that's the other main variable today with this verdict is how will the security forces react to crowds emotions of the crowd the amount of what's what the verdict is i want also to bring up something else that something we keep hearing and we had again this morning at the process was it was interesting when the lawyers at the end of the show and trials had. said look this isn't the in time in the atlas police department on trial this is derek chauvin on trial and i think the activists here i mean they may understand why the prosecutors framed it in that manner so that the and we know that some members of the jury were very proper lease but that isn't the point of the protesters out here that constant point is it's not a few bad apples this isn't about a direct shaven or kim party. who kills who kill down to right last week i mean just the mere fact that it happened during the trial is just something else this is a stomach this is a problem with policing in america not only is the minneapolis police department all police departments going to merica are on trial so that's
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a very strong message which differs from the message that we heard from the prosecutors yesterday this is about a fundamental problem with policing in america and indeed what was interesting also this morning we heard joe biden has no way to him and he said that he was praying for the right verdict which i think is overwhelming in my view but we kept hearing from speaker of the speaker this morning was do something joe biden you all know in power you have both houses of congress you said you would be different to the other to the other parties the republicans you haven't done anything do something get on a plane for us don't get down here is not talking to people we don't need you to cry on the shoulder of another black family who's lost a family member when one person said we needed to actually do something so this idea of biden's empathetic presidency wasn't going down terribly well here this morning because they were saying well yeah all right that's all very well but do something. with the latest with several protesters who have gathered outside the courthouse she has she had for the moment thank you and just
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a reminder for the viewers tuning in right now we have heard that the jury in the direction of in trial for the killing of george floyd have reached a verdict so we are expecting them to appear in court any time and now really we're told about 2030 g.m.t. so any time now we are expecting the jury to go back to court and return a verdict well let's just remind you now what the 3 charges are that they were chosen actually faces now the 1st is unintentional 2nd degree murder with a penalty of up to 40 years in prison prosecutors have to prove that his conduct was a substantial causal factor in georgia. and that show even was committing a felony assault at the time now he's also facing a certain degree murder charge that means exactions cause floyd's death with recklessness and that this regard for human life and then there is 2nd degree
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manslaughter which require risp roof that chauvin cause that floyd's that through negligence so those are the 3 charges let's go back to that behinds a former baltimore city prosecutor and the trial lawyer who joins us now from washington d.c. just explain the legal angles to this can he be found guilty of all slippery charges or could he be found guilty and presumably can be found guilty of the lesser ones but if he's found guilty of the most serious one does that mean is automatically guilty of the other 2 as well. you know so the judge instructed the jury and i may just do a disclaimer i do not practice in minnesota but the judge did instruct the jury that they have to decide one all 3 charges so they're not able to just decide one the highest charge of 2nd degree murder and then just you know forget the other ones because they're lesser included charges they must decide on all 3 charges so
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we're going to hear since they do have a verdict we're going to hear what their verdict is going 2nd degree murder 3rd degree murder and as well as manslaughter and i say that i don't practice in minnesota for the very reason that in the areas that i practice and. once you get the jury instruction generally is once you reach the highest charge which in this case of the 2nd degree murder then you don't have to go any further that your jury verdict sheet says you just stop there but that is not the case in minnesota so yes they had they have to reach a verdict on all 3 charges and that's what they were instructed or so one of the main points of the fence was that george floyd had drugs in his system and so there were other reasons as well as their children's knee on his neck that caused is that so bearing that in mind when we look at the 2nd degree charge which means prosecutors had to prove his conduct was a substantial causal factor or basically what the jury would have had to decide was
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that all the other factors weren't key but that mainly it was the knee on the neck would that be correct. well what they have to let me just go back a little bit on 2nd degree murder because what they have to decide with 2nd degree murder is that the act that was committed by derrick showmen was a felony that is what raises 2nd degree murder to the 40 years they have to show that the assault that occurred when mr floyd was a family so that's really went there are you know what they're looking at in terms of in terms of that. in terms of that issue. in terms of causation they do not have to show that the knee why mr floyd's nat for 9 minutes and 29 seconds was the only cause that caused his death they just have to show that is was a substantial contributing factor so he couldn't hand you know heart issues and all the other things that they were trying to bring up the fact nolen is. carbon
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monoxide from the car which they never really you know prove that they just kind of sort of threw that in the mix and all the other things that they're trying to say those other things can exist as long as the air show veins in the. car is his loss of life that is what they have to show him that it was a consensual contributing factor not that it was the only factor but it was a substantial contributing factor. of course derek chauvinism trial for the killing of george floyd but as we've been hearing this is about so much more this is about i guess a systemic you know many people believing that the police is often too violent especially with members of the black community just while the trial was going on we had the deaths of 21 to write and that was killed by a police woman that came near minneapolis as well that was the case of adam toledo a young boy about 13 again killed in this on video very much like the
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george floyd killing how key is the video evidence and now we're seeing emerge more and more now that everyone has a mobile phone and a camera how he is that in this case and in case a similar to it. well in this case the video was but let's not be fully ourselves there'd been video in other cases and the police officer has been found not guilty in the case of walter scott a few years ago mr. scott was running away from the police in south carolina he was 27 yards away from the police officer and he shot him in his back and all of that was seen on video but at the end of the day the jury found the jury could not reach a verdict it was actually a hung jury but the thing that is different in this case that i think distinguishes it from the other cases is not just the video but the fact of the matter is this was not a split 2nd decision because that's kind of what people say broke their heads
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around is that i was a split 2nd decision you know the police there in fear for their lives i mean we clearly saw from this video that derek showed them was not in fear for his life he had his sunglasses on top of his head his hands in his pocket he was looking the way it was looking like he sat in you know what the bar that is what was crucial is what was shown when this video not just the fact that there was a video. but behind's thank you so much for sharing your expertise with us we are of course still waiting for the verdict and we will i hope cross live to you to get your reaction when that comes in for the moment madam sink you very much again just to remind viewers we're just tuning in we have heard that the jury in the better show of in trial for the killing of george floyd have reached a verdict and we are expecting that verdict any time. soon so you can see there that's the live live shot of the courts there we are
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we were told we were told that that would happen about 15 minutes ago or so but i'm sure it's imminent and we will bring you that live here on al-jazeera we are staying with this story as it develops well in the meantime let's go to ronald sullivan professor of law and director of the criminal justice institute at the harvard law school who joins us now via skype from newton massachusetts thank you so much for being with us did it surprise you that the jury reached a verdict in what is relatively speaking a very short period of time. it's an extraordinarily short period of time yes indeed it did surprise me in a normal case a very quick verdict is usually a good sign for the defense it's usually an acquittal jurist in the take their time before they convict someone in effectively put them in jail for years and years and
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years that's in the normal case though there's absolutely nothing normal about this case so it's nearly impossible to predict what i will say though given the very short period of time i imagine the prosecution is very nervous because they too are used to quick verdicts meeting a in acquittal on them we're seeing people gathering outside the courthouse now and we've also had even in the past 24 hours for example president biden getting in touch with george floyd's the family about the case what impact do you think all of that attention and the way it obviously got very political what you think it will have that's had on the trial but also on the verdict because there is a risk that some people will still not see justice to be done which i understand is obviously a difficult concept because we don't right now know what the verdict is. you know
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it was i think a bit risky for the president to comment before the verdict came in and the reason is that although the jury is sequestered that means that they are away from everyone and they're instructed not to look at any media the defense is going to argue that the president of the united states created an environment this is assuming there's a conviction that the president of the united states weighed in and him created an environment where his client could not get a fair trial so personally i wish that president biden had waited until after there was a verdict before commenting at all and so i'm concerned about that but the point is the jury was sequestered and we have to rely on the fact that the jury will in fact follow the instructions of the court that they will remain impartial that they will not watch the news and they that they will not allow extrajudicial outside of the
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courtroom influence influences in any way impact their deliberation or decision so interesting i found when the joy when the judge and at the trial yesterday when he was giving instructions to the jury he specifically said that they must not consider the consequences of their verdict as they've reached it so that's what the judge said yesterday out but would you mind just talking us through what the charges are again and what you think having watched the trial 4 for the past 3 weeks will be will have been the main sticking points when it comes to the jury reaching a verdict. yet what the 1st charge is 2nd degree murder and that is what is colloquially called felony murder that means if the jury finds that the defendant intended the felony of assault that he intended to a so george freud in georgia boy died which he did then the defendant is guilty of the murder you don't have to prove that he intended to kill him or
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intended to and click grave bodily harm on him all you have to do is prove that he intended the assault and if the assault ended in death then the defendant isn't liable so that's the top charge it carries 40 years in it is the most difficult charge because of the fitz has argued that well look there's no evidence that he unlawfully assaulted george george floyd what we pay argue is that he was acting consistent with the protocols of the police we'll see what happens there the lowest count the 3rd count is called culpable negligence what that means is that there was some duty of care all to mr frewen and that the former officer did not give the care that was due to him was negligent didn't intend to do anything but just did not exercise the quantum of care that was due
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that sufficient for criminal negligence criminally negligent homicide that's count 3 now there's a medal count and there's a chance that the jury might might just compromise in the middle the middle count in minnesota is called murder 3 or murder in the 3rd degree and what that means is that the defended consciously disregarded a known risk once again it's an unintentional crime you don't have to intent to kill anybody but you do have to. i know that there is a risk of serious bodily injury you have a minimum if there is some risk and you consciously disregard that risk then it's enough for conviction under count 2 and you know if i were a betting person and i'm not but if i were i would think that the jury might compromise in the middle and do it convict on 3rd degree murder oh we should
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find out soon enough what their verdict is let's talk a little bit about sentencing as well because obviously that is not up to the jury that is i think up to the judge when the jury returns a verdict so for example 2nd degree murder carries a penalty of up to 40 years in prison when it comes to sentencing what it vaguely i mean obviously it's up to the judge but what are the differences roughly speaking between the 3 charges. so syncing is going to be a huge aspect of the case so the the 1st charge the top charge 2nd degree murder carries up to 40 years the middle charge 3rd degree murder carries up to 25 years and the locale the negligent homicide count goes up to 10 years now that does not mean that the court has to give the defendant the mechs should he be convicted but it means that that is the maximum that the court can go so in minnesota they have
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a system where the defendant can elect for a jury to consider the punishment or the judge. children elected the judge so if he's convicted the judge will consider the punishment also in minnesota there are what is caught sentencing guidelines these are ranges that the court should sentence within so given the facts of this case even though the max is 40 years the range may be 25 to 35 depending on what another department call the pretrial services comes up with in terms of a range they will write a report to precision thing report about mr children if he's convicted and the judge will consider that the judge can depart upward or downward from the range finally in minnesota there are a number of aggravating circumstances that if he is convicted the government the
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state will argue for example committing. a grievous crime in the presence of a minor remember there was a 9 year old there that is an enhanced mitt so if the range was say 25 to 35 years given a 1st time offender for homicide then that could bump it up even higher because it is called an aggravating circumstance so syncing is going to be important on. the other end of the spectrum if he's convicted of criminal negligence in the sentencing is very low i regret to say there will be an explosion of outrage that minnesota has not seen before in this is in light of the explosion of outreach that occurred george for it was initially killed yeah absolutely on the 25th of may at 2020 so less than
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a year ago and of course as i was mentioning with the correspondence this is the trial for the killing of george floyd a we have had other cases we had another case of a young man killed near minneapolis just last week also a younger boy a 13 year old i believe in chicago that was killed if you put this in context for us how rare is it for police officer is to have in one way or another been involved way with the death of especially a black man how rare is it for them to face the kinds of charges that there actually has faced it is extraordinarily rare for police officers to be hill to account when they have caused the death of anybody let alone black or brown citizens in the united states it is even more rare that a police officer is convicted of killing a black or brown person in the united states and that is the nature of the outrage
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here so. if you will indulge me in addition to having more of my hat as a scholar and harvard law professor and so forth i can also speak to you as an african-american man who grew up in the united states it is a feeling of texas to tea that you can't drive you can't go to the store you can't eat skid old you can't wear a hoodie you can't have an outstanding parking ticket you can't have an. fire plate without facing the death penalty and that is a grotesque set of affairs a grotesque status quo that that min and women of color continue to experience look there are laws about all of these things for which these folks allegedly war stop none of them include the death penalty right that's why we have a structural divide in the united states police officers arrest in judge and jury
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spics the punishment but what we have here it seems like the wild wild west with police officers just killing people over 'd an alleged rape $20.00 bill or packet of cigarettes that has to stop and that's why people are so very outraged when these situations happen again and again and again so this verdict is going to have repercussions that extend far beyond the 4 corners of that courtroom because it is this verdict is more of a metaphor than substance it says a lot about what the criminal justice system is who we take ourselves to be as citizens of the united states and how we elect to respond in the face of state sponsored violence. may have been a little more than you asked for but that's my that's my 2 suits we really appreciate both your expertise and your experience of course and as i said before
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this this story has been headline news around the world obviously an issue that is of great interest ronald sullivan for the moment thank you and of course we will i get your reaction when the verdict does come in for the moment thank you thank you well let's take you now outside the court in minneapolis where protesters have gathered let's listen in to some are addressing the crowd i'm. not no no no money now where i want to thank you and that's not my. cards. are taken off but i think. i met her and. then like i said i want to. thank you. thank you thank you. i don't.
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know. 5 the. answer to the protesters who have gathered outside the courthouse in. in the afternoon. if you've just tuned then now we have been hearing that the jury in the trial of derek shows and for the killing of george floyd have reached
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a verdict and we are expecting the jury to deliver that predict any time now you can see the images of the courtroom and the now many people who gathered outside the courthouse where the voicing the anger at that many have shown over the killing of george lloyd the and the police brutality let's go to john hendren now who has been following the trial for us he is outside of the courthouse as well in minneapolis john we were told that we might get the verdict about half an hour ago any idea if or why there was being holed up. there barbara imagine what is happening is that they're waiting for all of the major stakeholders to show up. in a trial of this magnitude you really want the judge the you know the all of the
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appropriate lawyers the family the floyd family as well those members who are allowed into the courtroom and that has been a very limited number. and we understand that family members have arrived at the courthouse we know that eric nelson the defense lawyers arrived there and derek show them the defendant have all arrived there a little while ago i i was giving you the wrong time because i was basing it on east coast time for a report i had seen well it turns out that might be true it might take an extra hour for them actually to get everybody assembled and come up with a verdict it's also possible that the court is dealing with the paperwork that needs to be done while this verdict is delivered although you would think that they would have been prepared even despite. the fact that this was done in really rapid time less than 24 hours from the time that the jury began to be sequestered and isolated and it is interesting to note that as far as we know from the pool reports
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the jurors did not ask any questions of the court and that seems a little unusual because of the covert 1000 restrictions they were given a laptop and they were allowed to look at the exhibits that the court. had throughout theirs case and normally they would go back to the court room to do that but in this case because it covered $1000.00 they did not do that and it seems if if we have learned everything from the pool reports that i believe we should that the jury really didn't need a lot of extra information besides what they got in the courtroom and this lead with which they came to this decision suggests that they were very decisive and that there wasn't a lot of rancor in that room between those jurors because after half a day yesterday on monday and then a little more than half a day today on tuesday they've come down with a decision and i expect we will hear it soon but that the judge wants to make sure
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that everybody who is important in this case is in that courtroom and that he's got everything lined up. john hendren were.


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