Derek Chauvin's attorneys ask for jury to see evidence from 2019 George Floyd arrest

Defense attorneys for ex-Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin are asking for the jury in his trial over George Floyd's death to see evidence from Floyd’s arrest from 2019.

Eric Nelson, the lead attorney for Chauvin, said that the similarities from the two arrests “are incredible,” according to Reuters, adding that “it’s the exact same behavior in two incidents almost exactly one year apart.”

Floyd was arrested in May 2019, an incident during which he reportedly became distressed as an officer pointed a gun at him. During that arrest, Floyd swallowed several opioid pills as police approached him.


According The Associated Press, Chauvin's defense is planning to argue that Floyd’s drug use contributed to his death.

Prosecutor Matthew Frank, however, argued that the defense wants to use the 2019 arrest to try and depict Floyd as a bad person.

Frank blasted the “desperation of the defense to smear Mr. Floyd’s character, to show that what he struggled with, an opiate addiction like so many Americans do, is really evidence of bad character,” according to AP.

Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill previously rejected an attempt to tell the jury about the previous arrest, but heard new arguments Tuesday. He said he would take at least a day to consider the request.

Floyd was pronounced dead May 25 after Chauvin knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. Graphic footage of the incident went viral and sparked nationwide protests against police brutality that lasted all summer.

An autopsy from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office from the day of Floyd's death showed trace amounts of fentanyl and methamphetamine in his system. However, the drugs were not listed as his cause of death.

Chauvin is on trial for second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Nelson on Monday also asked the court to pause and relocate the trial after the city of Minneapolis reached a $27 million settlement with Floyd’s family on Friday.