State Watch

Third day of Chauvin trial opens with footage of Floyd in convenience store

The third day of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin’s trial for the killing of George Floyd has been focused so far on a previously unseen place: inside the Cup Foods convenience store on the corner of 38th and Chicago where George Floyd was taken into custody by police.

The jury was shown the surveillance video inside the store, where Floyd had entered to buy a pack of cigarettes. Floyd later died outside the store after police arrested him, and Chauvin pinned him to the street by putting his knee on Floyd’s neck.

Chauvin now faces murder charges over the incident.

Much of the day’s testimony initially came from 19-year-old Christopher Martin, who was working as a cashier at the store on May 25, 2020, and was the person who sold the cigarettes to Floyd.

Martin told the court that the $20 bill that Floyd gave him “had a blue pigment to it, kind of like a $100 bill would have.”

“I found that odd. I assumed that it was fake,” Martin said.

This led to Martin and his co-workers on two different occasions going out to Floyd’s vehicle in an attempt to get him to come back into the store.

The witness said that one of Floyd’s companions who was in the vehicle had tried to buy something from him, but that he’d turned him away.

“It kind of seemed like [Floyd’s companion] was trying to scheme like he knew it was a fake bill,” Martin said. “I thought that George didn’t really know that it was a fake bill, so I thought I’d be doing him a favor.” 

Martin said that he had offered to his manager to pay for the fake $20 bill from his own pay after he approached Floyd’s vehicle the first time, noting that the store made employees pay for counterfeit bills that they accept from their own paychecks.

However, Martin’s manager insisted that he go back to Floyd’s car a second time.

Floyd and the two passengers in the car refused both times, leading Cup Foods to call the police.

Later, when Chauvin was kneeling on Floyd’s neck outside of the store, Martin said that he joined the bystanders and took a video which he subsequently deleted later that night.

“The ambulance went straight onto 38th, instead of going straight on Chicago, and if you live in South Minneapolis, the easiest way to get to the hospital is to go [straight on] Chicago,” Martin said. “That to me kind of made it clear that he was no longer with us.”

It has been reported that the paramedics who arrived on the scene performed what is known as a “load-and-go,” a technique used by medical first responders when a person’s condition is critical and it would be quicker to begin treatment inside of the ambulance on the way to the hospital.

Martin’s testimony painted a more clear picture of what initially led to the police being called to the scene.

Tags Black Lives Matter Derek Chauvin trial Minneapolis Minnesota police reform

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