MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - The first seven jurors seated in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged in the death of George Floyd, will be re-questioned Wednesday morning over the recently announced $27 million civil settlement for the Floyd family.
Judge Peter Cahill, the Hennepin County District Court judge presiding over the trial, said the jurors will be questioned via Zoom starting at 8:45 a.m. They will be questioned about their knowledge of the settlement and whether it will impact their ability to be fair and impartial in this case.
The judge is the only one who will do the questioning; the jurors will not be re-questioned by the defense or the state. He expects to spend about five minutes questioning each juror. Wednesday's jury selection for the remaining members of the 12-person jury, with two alternates, is expected to begin at 9:30 a.m.
The jurors are being called back after Chauvin’s defense attorney, Eric Nelson, expressed concerns that news of the settlement could "taint the jury pool."
City leaders announced the record settlement on Friday, with all city council members voting to approve the money to settle the civil suit brought by the family. Nelson called the timing of the announcement, in the middle of jury selection for the criminal trial, "suspicious."
Nelson motioned the court to delay the trial and to move it out of Hennepin County. Absent those actions, he said the judge should recall the seven already seated jurors and re-question them as well as grant the defense additional peremptory challenges and sequester the jury.
Cahill granted the motion to recall the jurors, but denied the defense’s request for additional strikes and to sequester the jury. He said Tuesday he is still considering the motions for continuance and change of venue.
The Chauvin trial is being streamed live, gavel to gavel, at fox9.com/live.