Derek Chauvin’s Lawyer Says ‘Angry’ Bystanders Were Threat To Cops, But Bodycam Footage Shows Otherwise

by : Saman Javed on : 04 Apr 2021 17:17
Derek Chauvin's Lawyer Says 'Angry' Bystanders Were Threat To Cops, But Bodycam Footage Shows OtherwisePA Images/Washington Post/YouTube

Derek Chauvin’s defence lawyers have argued that bystanders who witnessed George Floyd’s death were a threat to police, but bodycam footage shows otherwise.

Former Minneapolis police officer Chauvin is accused of killing Floyd by kneeling on his neck for more than eight minutes in May last year.


In opening statements on the first day of the trial,  Chauvin’s lawyers said the crowd of people gathered at the scene made officers worry for their safety and distracted them from Floyd.

Over the next few days, Chauvin’s defence team called on a number of bystanders who witnessed Floyd’s death.

Chauvin‘s attorney, Eric Nelson, attempted to portray one witness, MMA fighter Donald Williams, as an angry bystander.


On the stand, Nelson asked Williams if he had called Chauvin ‘a bum’ at least 13 times. Williams replies to say if that’s what the lawyer had counted in the video, that was the case.

Nelson then argued that the terms Williams used grew ‘more and more angry’, but Williams pushed back, stating: ‘They grew more and more pleading for life.’

Nelson went on to state that Williams had also called Chauvin a ‘p*ssy ass b*tch’.


When asked whether it’s fair to say that Williams ‘grew angrier and angrier’, Williams responded: ‘No, I grew professional and professional, I stayed in my body. You can’t paint me out to be angry.’

Nelson also argued that Genevieve Hansen, an off-duty firefighter, got ‘louder and more frustrated and upset’ the longer Chauvin’s knee remained on Floyd’s neck. Rejecting his argument, Hansen asserted that she was only ‘more desperate’.

Body camera footage of the scene, taken from former police officer Tou Thao, shows the witnesses standing on the edge of the curb, pleading with the officers to check Floyd’s pulse.

Upon realising that Floyd is not moving, Hansen and Williams are seen demanding that officers check his pulse but do not approach the officers.

If you’ve been affected by any of the issues in this story, you can speak in confidence about where to get help from Mind free on 0300 123 3393, 9am–6pm Monday to Friday.

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Topics: News, Derek Chauvin, George Floyd, Minneapolis, Now