Most of the foundation was gone over in the first week of the Derek Chauvin trial that began on March 29, 2021, with what happened in George Floyd’s death last May. The infamous video shook the world to the circumstances surrounding the crime scene that day and eventually introduced George Floyd’s drug addiction.
Lt. Johnny Mercil, a Minneapolis police officer who conducted a use-of-force training course participated by Derek Chauvin in October 2018, testified at Tuesday’s trials.
During interrogation by defense attorney Eric Nelson, Mercil agreed with Nelson that an officer could keep a neck brace on someone who had been rendered unconscious while waiting for another officer to arrive. Mercil, on the other hand, rejected Chauvin’s claim that he should keep the neck restraint while waiting for emergency medical help.
Mercil stated Chauvin’s knee “appears to be between the shoulder blades” after seeing a still picture from an officer’s body-worn film of an EMT palpating Floyd’s carotid artery on his neck to check his pulse. Mercil then claimed that Chauvin’s use of force was not a neck constraint but rather a bodyweight lock.
As Chauvin and the other officers were pushing him down, George Floyd yelled out that he couldn’t breathe. Officers inform Floyd that he can breathe and he can speak at one point.
During interrogation, Mercil admitted that certain people make attempts to stop being arrested. He has had suspects say things like “I can’t breathe” while attempting to arrest them.
“If someone can talk, they can breath?” Nelson inquired about Mercil’s training and remarked.
“It’s been said, yes,” Mercil said.
Officer Nicole Mackenzie, who is in charge of the department’s EMT unit, confirmed that just because someone can speak doesn’t mean they aren’t having trouble breathing.
Earlier on Monday, Minneapolis Police Chief Arradondo testified that Chauvin restrained Floyd in violation of the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) policy. He claimed that while MPD allowed officers to use “light to moderate” pressure-aware neck restraints, Chauvin did not obey the policy “in any way, shape, or form.”
But Arradondo was forced to confess that he had not dealt with street-level crimes for years and that his personal knowledge of de-escalation lacked in a practical sense.
When Mercil was shown the same picture of Chauvin kneeling with his knee on Floyd’s neck, he explained that officers are not taught this, but it is equivalent to using bodyweight to control technique.
Monday’s hearings focused on the use of force.
Maya Echols, a model, and Black Lives Matter activist, warned that if former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin is not convicted for George Floyd’s death, the city will face more protests and arson.
In a now-deleted video, Echols said, “If George Floyd’s murderer is not sentenced, just know that all hell is gonna break loose,” she said, adding. “Don’t be surprised when building are on fire. Just sayin’.”
On TikTok, the social media influencer, who is signed with IMG Worldwide, has almost half a million fans.