Today's rant is about the morality of baseless prosecutions. Some prosecutors are, I believe, just lower than dirt. I don't have any problem with defense attorneys doing their best to keep scumbags out of prison. Everybody deserves a good defense against the government bureaucracy. But when a government prosecutor knows the defendant is not guilty, and still tries to put them in jail, that I just cannot stomach.
Here's the facts that I am aware of. George Floyd was about 233 lbs and 6' 3". Derek Chauvin was the largest of the police officers at 5' 9" and 140 lbs. George Floyd resisted arrest. He took an overdose of fentanyl and methamphetamines, reportedly to hide them from the police. He bloodied his nose on the car's window while resisting arrest. He complained about trouble breathing before he was put on the ground. The police officers called an ambulance at least 9 minutes before it arrived. The knee on the neck was approved police procedure to subdue unruly prisoners. It was in the police manual and they received training on it. Finally, the autopsy found no evidence of trauma to the neck and reportedly indicated that George Floyd died from an overdose of fentanyl and methamphetamines.
Unless any of the reports are wrong, or there is some evidence of which I am not aware (possible), there is no other conclusion but that George Floyd died from a drug overdose and not from Derek Chauvin putting his knee on his neck.
I am not sure why the judge did not grant a motion from the defense for summary judgment. Maybe it's not allowed in Minnesota law for the charged crime. More likely, the judge would have been afraid of mob justice. After all, his identity is not kept secret.
Now I turn to the government prosecutors' team of 12 or so lawyers. They clearly must know about the above facts, more intimately than I do. But in their opening statements they either left out key parts or lied about some of the facts (like the knee being approved procedure). So they too must know Derek Chauvin is innocent of the charges. Yet they are trying to get 12 jurors to send him to jail for 20 years or more.
Who would do such a thing? Why would someone do such a thing? Let's consider the alternatives.
First, might the prosecutors have a different take on the evidence? Since the autopsy indicated no trauma and death from a drug overdose, I cannot understand manslaughter or murder charges. Doesn't matter what took place before death if that autopsy is correct. That alternative is out. Maybe they could claim delay in calling an ambulance, I don't have those facts. But with five officers at the site and charged, I suspect they called the ambulance as soon as they heard the claims about having trouble breathing. So this alternative is not realistic.
Secondly, maybe they are just trying to prevent a riot. That I could understand. Give him a fair trial and present the evidence. Except that they don't need 12+ prosecutors for a fair trail. And the jury selection definitely showed that they did not want anyone with an open mind. Further, their opening statements were false and misleading. Maybe preventing a riot is part of the rationale that lets them sleep at night. But it apparently is not associated with giving the defendant a fair trial.
Third, maybe they were not given a choice by their bosses about whether to accept the prosecution or give it a pass. That could very well be true for the government employees that are part of the prosecuting team (not the outside attorneys assisting). I can definitely understand wanting to keep your job and wanting to get promoted. But here is the crux of my blog. How far would you go to keep a job and a chance of promotion? Would you be willing to put an innocent man (or five) in jail for 20 years to life? Would you respect someone that would? I would not.
The last alternative would be that the prosecutors want to stir up racial enmity and justify BLM/Antifa actions and positions. I do not understand such a position. Hence, I cannot say whether this is the situation and explanation for the continued prosecution. Continuing a prosecution of an innocent man for such a reason is just despicable.
Bottom line, I have no respect for the prosecuting team, and not much for the judge. If I were a Minnesota police officer, I would be finding another line of work or move out of state.