Tue | Nov 29, 2022

State, cops seek to bar evidence in trial over George Floyd killing

Published:Wednesday | October 5, 2022 | 4:40 PM
This combo of photos provided by the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office in Minnesota show Tou Thao (left) and J. Alexander Kueng. Prosecutors and defence attorneys for the two former Minneapolis police officers charged in the killing of George Floyd have filed more than 100 motions to limit testimony or evidence at trial — with many requests relying heavily on what happened at the previous two trials in Floyd’s death. (Hennepin County Sheriff's Office via AP, File)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Prosecutors and defence attorneys for two former Minneapolis police officers charged in the killing of George Floyd have filed more than 100 motions to limit testimony or evidence at trial — with many requests relying heavily on what happened at the previous two trials in Floyd's death.

J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

With jury selection to begin on October 24, both sides are using what they learned in the prior trials to try to shape the proceeding in their favour.

Hearings on the motions are scheduled for Thursday and Friday.

Defense attorney Mike Brandt, who isn't connected to the case, said it's typical pretrial maneuvering for the two sides to guess what the other will introduce and try to gain an advantage.

Kueng and Thao “have a better crystal ball,” he said.

Kueng, Thao and Thomas Lane were working with Derek Chauvin on May 25, 2020, when Chauvin, who is white, used his knee to pin Floyd's neck to the pavement for more than nine minutes as the 46-year-old black man said he couldn't breathe and eventually grew still.

Kueng knelt on Floyd's back, Lane held his legs and Thao kept bystanders back.

Floyd's killing was captured in bystander video and sparked worldwide protests as part of a reckoning over racial injustice.

Many of the requests stem from what's already happened in court.

Tom Plunkett, Kueng's attorney, wants the judge to bar the state's witnesses from addressing jurors directly and from asking them to take actions as part of a demonstration, such as asking them to examine their own necks.

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