Some of Floyd's 2019 arrest evidence admissible in Chauvin trial, judge rules

Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill ruled Friday some evidence related to George Floyd's 2019 arrest, including a portion of the accompanying body camera video, is admissible in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged in Floyd's death. 

Cahill said there is "some relevance" to Floyd’s prior arrest on May 6, 2019 because it shows an example of Floyd’s physical reaction to being confronted by police in a similar situation as his deadly arrest on May 25, 2020. 

The judge said a portion of the body camera video from the arresting officer will be allowed at trial, as well as Floyd’s blood pressure results at the scene, the suspected illicit drug pills in his car and his statements to the paramedic for the medical diagnosis. 

"The whole point here is we have medical evidence on what happens when Mr. Floyd is faced with virtually the same situation: confrontation by police at gunpoint followed by a rapid ingestion of some drugs, we don’t know exactly how many but there was an admission that he had done it at the time of the stop," Cahill said. "That is medical evidence." 

Floyd’s emotional behavior during the arrest, including crying out to his mother, is not admissible as evidence, Cahill ruled.

Chauvin’s defense attorney, Eric Nelson, moved the court to admit Floyd’s 2019 arrest and the accompanying body camera footage as evidence, despite Judge Cahill previously ruling it would be inadmissible. 
Nelson said the defense found meth and fentanyl pills in the back of the police car Floyd’s deadly arrest took place in and around. He brought up the 2019 arrest and argued that the pills suggest a "modus operandi" for Floyd ingesting narcotics during an arrest.