Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 22.5 years in prison on charges charges of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter
The former Minneapolis police officer convicted of murder in George Floyd´s death is appealing his conviction and sentence, saying the judge abused his discretion or erred during several key points in the case.
Derek Chauvin filed an intent to appeal with the Minnesota state appellate court. He had 90 days from when he was sentenced on June 25 to file the notice.
In court documents, Chauvin said he planned to appeal on 14 grounds.
Chauvin was convicted earlier this year on state charges of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd´s 2020 death.
He was sentenced to 22.5 years – a sentence higher than the presumptive 12.5 years after the judge agreed with prosecutors that there were aggravating factors in Floyd’s death.
Chauvin is also charged in federal court with violating Floyd´s civil rights when he knelt on the black man´s neck for about 9.5 minutes as Floyd was facedown on the pavement, not resisting and pleading for air.
He has pleaded not guilty to those charges.
He said he would represent himself in the appeal, according to FOX News, because he was denied a public defender. He is also asking the appeals process be put on hold until the Minnesota Supreme Court reviews the decision to deny him a public defender.
The former Minneapolis police officer is seeking to appeal his conviction in the murder of George Floyd, whose death was ruled a homicide
Chauvin was seen in video footage kneeling on George Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes while he cried out that he couldn’t breathe
In an affidavit filed Thursday, Chauvin said he has no attorney in the appeals process, and has no income aside from nominal prison wages.
His case before Cahill was funded by the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association´s legal defense fund, but that ended after his conviction, according to FOX 9 News.
Chauvin wrote in the court documents: ‘I have been informed that their obligation to pay for my representation terminated upon my conviction and sentencing.’
All grounds that Chauvin raised in his notice of intent to appeal had been raised previously by defense attorney Eric Nelson as the case worked its way through the district court.
Among them, he claims Judge Peter Cahill abused his discretion when he denied Chauvin´s request to move the trial out of Hennepin County due to pretrial publicity.
He also claimed the judge abused his discretion when he denied a request to sequester the jury for the duration of the trial, and when he denied requests to postpone the trial or grant a new one.
Nelson had previously argued that intense publicity around Floyd´s death tainted the jury pool and that the trial should have been moved away from Minneapolis.
Chauvin filed an intent to appeal with with the Minnesota state appellate court on Thursday
There were reports in February that Chauvin had been prepared to plead guilty to third-degree murder, and an announcement during jury selection that Minneapolis reached a $27 million settlement with Floyd´s family.
Also, the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright by a police officer in nearby Brooklyn Center happened during Chauvin´s trial and sparked days of protests.
Chauvin’s court filing also said the district court erred when it concluded that Morries Hall, the man who was with Floyd on the day of his arrest, would not be forced to testify on behalf of the defense. He also said the court erred when it permitted prosecutors to present cumulative evidence on use of force.
Chauvin said he also intends to argue that the judge abused his discretion when he failed to allow Chauvin to strike ‘clearly biased’ jurors for cause, when he limited the admissibility of evidence from a prior arrest of Floyd, and when he denied Nelson´s post-verdict request for a new trial and request for a hearing to question jurors to investigate alleged misconduct.
He also noted the court’s failure to make an official record of numerous sidebars throughout the trial.
Nelson had accused juror Brandon Mitchell of not being candid during jury selection because he didn´t mention his participation in a march in 2020 to honor the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
Prosecutors countered that Mitchell had been open about his views in a jury questionnaire and during juror questioning.
The judge ruled the defense didn´t establish any evidence of juror misconduct either during trial or during jury selection that warranted an evidentiary hearing.
What appears to be Chauvin’s best bet is his questioning the court’s decision to allow the prosecution to add a third-degree murder charge against him.
A similar appeal was the center point of a Supreme court ruling this month that overturned the third-degree murder conviction of former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor, who accidentally shot an Australian yoga instructor who called 911 about a sexual assault in her neighborhood in July 2017.
14 ISSUES DEREK CHAUVIN PROPOSED TO RAISE IN APPEAL
1. The District Court abused its discretion when it denied Appellant’s motion for change of venue or a new trial
2. The District Court abused its discretion when it denied Appellant’s motion for a continuance or a new trial
3. The District Court abused its discretion when it denied Appellant’s motion s to sequester the jury throughout trial
4. The State committed prejudicial prosecutorial misconduct
5. The District Court prejudicially erred when it concluded that the testimony of Morries Hall, or in the alternative Mr. Hall’s statements to law enforcement, did not fall under Minn. R. Evid. 804(b)(3) and was not a violation Appellant’s constitutional confrontation rights
6. The District Court prejudicially erred when it permitted the State to present cumulative evidence with respect to use of force
7. The District Court abused its discretion when it ordered the State to lead witnesses on direct examination
8. The District Court abused its discretion when it failed to make an official record of the numerous sidebar conferences that occurred during trials
9. The District Court abused its discretion when it failed to allow Appellant to exercise several cause strikes for clearly biased jurors during voir dire
10. The District Court abused its discretion when it permitted the State of amend its complaint to add the charge of third-degree murder
11. The District Court abused its discretion when it strictly limited and undercut the admissibility of George Floyd’s May 6, 2019 arrest
12. The District Court abused its discretion when it submitted instructions to the jury that materially misstated the law
13. The District Court abused its discretion when it by denying Appellant’s motion for a Schwartz hearing
14. The District Court abused its discretion when it denied Appellant’s post-verdict motion for a new trial due to juror misconduct