ST. PAUL — Former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin, along with the three other former-officers present at the scene of George Floyd's death in May, will face trial in March 2021 for murder, manslaughter and aiding and abetting murder.
According to a Star Tribune pool report, Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill during a Monday, June 29 pre-trial hearing set the trial date for March 8, 2021 for all four officers. Another pre-trial hearing is set for Sept. 11, 2020.
Chauvin, who knelt on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes on May 25 as Floyd cried for air, has been charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter. The other tree officers present at the incident — Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J Alexander Kueng — who did not intervene to save Floyd, have been charged with aiding and abetting murder. Chauvin and Thao remain in custody, while Lane and Kueng have been let out on bail.
Cahill and attorneys said at Monday's hearing that the trial is set months from now because of a massive amount of discovery gathered by the state — thousands of pages and hundreds of of videos and recordings. State Assistant Attorney General Matthew Frank called the evidence "voluminous," and said there is still more investigating yet to do.
The court has questioned for weeks whether proceedings should be broadcast live. Defense attorneys have motioned to allow cameras in the courtroom, saying the case is of great public interest, but Cahill has remained against the idea and repeated his opposition Monday.
Cahill also expressed frustration over public statements made on the case by elected officials and those close to the case, which he said could jeopardize the fairness of the trial and the court's ability to select a jury. He said he doesn't yet find a gag order necessary, but requested parties involved to stop making public statements.
Frank said that his team has asked those close to the case to limit their public discussion, but "legally, we don't have control over them." Cahill said if the publicity continues, the court may need to change venues for March's trial.