2 trials in George Floyd case: Chauvin trial in March, 3 other former officers in late summer

From left: Derek Chauvin, J Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao.

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin will stand trial alone in March while the other three former officers charged in the case relating to George Floyd‘s death will go on trial together late this summer, according to a court ruling.

Judge Peter Cahill filed the orders in Hennepin County District Court on Monday.

The prosecution and defense came together last week to argue their positions in moving the murder trial to a later date during a remote hearing. The State has asked the trial to be pushed back three months, which would move the original date of March 8 to June.

Prosecutors have argued it its a COVID-19 concern and that the delay could allow more people to get vaccinated against the virus. The list includes prospective jurors as well as large groups of protesters expected to gather across Minneapolis during the trial.https://d838548a26c46212c48b4a350b31e977.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html

According to the court filings, Chauvin’s jury trial will begin on March 8. Then, former officers Thomas Lane, Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao will remain joined for trial starting on Aug. 23. 

In addition to the discussion of moving trials, the State and the defense also discussed a modification of the expert witness disclosure deadlines.

“The Court’s amended Order of December 17, 2020, extending expert witness disclosure deadlines, shall be amended, but only to allow the State to disclose expert reports and findings and complete written summaries of the subject matter of each expert’s testimony by February 1, 2021,” the court filings stated, in part, on Chauvin’s trial.

The order doesn’t apply to the other three, as they “may agree to a later date for expert disclosures” for the August trial. 

Chauvin is charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter. Kueng, Lane and Thao are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.