By AFP Staff
On March 29, defense attorney Eric Nelson, in the trial against former police officer Derek Chauvin accused of murdering George Floyd, gave his opening arguments in Minneapolis. Nelson argued that Floyd’s death was caused by drugs and chronic health problems.
“The evidence will show that Mr. Floyd died of a cardiac arrhythmia that occurred as a result of hypertension, his coronary disease, the ingestion of methamphetamine and fentanyl, and the adrenaline flowing through his body, all of which acted to further compromise an already compromised heart,” said Nelson. “The evidence will show that when confronted by police, Mr. Floyd put drugs in his mouth in an effort to conceal them from the police.”
Nelson added that, if jurors “apply reason and common sense” they will find Chauvin not guilty.
Special Prosecutor Jerry Blackwell commented on said drug use during his opening statement, saying “What you will learn is that George Floyd lived for years, day in and day out, every day, with all of these conditions until one day, May 25, when it ended in nine minutes and 29 seconds, and it was the only day he didn’t survive.”
Chauvin has been charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter and third-degree murder after being filmed kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes, leading to his death.
You can watch Nelson’s entire opening statement by clicking here.