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May 7, 2021

I warned you that the Derek Chauvin guilty-on-all-counts verdict was not going to be the end of that story, but the latest news is an unexpected twist. Everyone assumed his attorneys would file an appeal based on attempted jury intimidation. But instead, they’re moving for a whole new trial based on prosecutor and juror misconduct, errors of law at trial, and that the verdict was contrary to law.

You can read the details at the link, but two of their chief arguments are hard to dispute. One is that it was a mistake to refuse to move the trial out of Minneapolis or to sequester the jury, knowing that this would lead to a tainted jury pool and the likelihood of jurors being afraid of riots or retribution if they didn’t vote to convict.

The other is that a photo has surfaced online of one of the jurors at a rally in DC last summer commemorating the Rev. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. He’s wearing a BLM cap and a Black Lives Matter T-shirt with King’s photo and the words, “Get your knee off our neck.”

During jury selection, he denied participating in any protests of police brutality. He claims that wasn’t a protest of Floyd’s death and that he just went to see DC and be a part of commemorating King. But it certainly doesn’t make it easy for the prosecution to argue that Chauvin got an impartial jury.

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