Chauvin ‘Absolutely’ Violated Policy, Minneapolis Police Chief Says

The chief testified that once George Floyd stopped resisting and cried for help, Derek Chauvin “should have stopped.” Here’s the latest on the trial.,

LiveUpdated April 5, 2021, 5:12 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 5:12 p.m. ET

Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, testified that once George Floyd stopped resisting and cried for help, Mr. Chauvin should have released his restraint.

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Watch live video of the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former police officer charged in the death of George Floyd. Warning: The video may include graphic images.CreditCredit…Court TV
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April 5, 2021, 4:54 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:54 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

This afternoon the court is hearing from Inspector Katie Blackwell, who heads the Minneapolis Police Department’s Fifth Precinct. It was targeted by demonstrators last summer during the unrest in the streets following George Floyd’s death, the night after the Third Precinct headquarters burned down. At the time of Floyd’s death, Blackwell was the commander of the training division. We will likely hear from her what kind of training in use-of-force and other policies that Derek Chauvin should have been exposed to.

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April 5, 2021, 5:01 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 5:01 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Inspector Blackwell, a department veteran, has known Derek Chauvin for 20 years, she said. They worked together as community service officers before joining the police force.

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April 5, 2021, 4:51 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:51 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

To end the questioning of Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, one of the prosecutors went right at a question regarding defense attorney Eric Nelson’s argument last week that Derek Chauvin was distracted by the increasingly incensed crowd watching him restrain George Floyd. “Would one way to de-escalate the crowd who’s experiencing something shocking be to stop doing the thing that’s shocking them?” the lawyer asked Chief Arradondo. “Absolutely,” he responded.

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April 5, 2021, 4:48 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:48 p.m. ET

By Matt Furber

A make-shift memorial for George Floyd near the corner where he died.
A make-shift memorial for George Floyd near the corner where he died.Credit…Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times

Outside a bakery and cafe in south Minneapolis on Monday, about a mile west of Cup Foods, where George Floyd died, Justin Biel was working at a picnic table and enjoying a cup of coffee. Mr. Biel, a history professor at Minnesota State University, Mankato, has been following the trial of Derek Chauvin — mostly through radio coverage — and has pondered both the immediate developments in court and how future historians may view them.

“When you see the courtroom procedure, it’s so stressful,” Mr. Biel, 45, said. “Everybody constantly has to be guarding what they say. The misplaced remark has the ability to swing the trial. It’s a lot of weight to carry.”

In the long run, Mr. Biel said, the court records, primary material for historians, will be important and compelling, regardless of the outcome of the trial. He noted that the historical record was being created in part by average citizens who just happened upon the arrest.

“It’s crazy how the witnesses are regular and ordinary people,” he said, adding that he would not have been a viable juror because he would have found it hard to be objective based on the video. “For them to have to relive things — I feel a lot of pain for them.”

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April 5, 2021, 4:39 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:39 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, just agreed with defense lawyer Eric Nelson’s assertion that one of the police body cameras appeared to show that Derek Chauvin’s knee was on George Floyd’s shoulder blade, not neck. But prosecutors point out that that was the moment when the paramedics arrived, and that other video seemed to show the knee on the neck.

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April 5, 2021, 4:45 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:45 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

The position of Chauvin’s knee is significant because a neck restraint is considered particularly dangerous, since it can cut off a suspect’s airflow.

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April 5, 2021, 4:29 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:29 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

I’ve attempted to ask Chief Arradondo yes-or-no questions before, as Derek Chauvin’s lawyer is doing now during cross-examination, and he is very skillful at taking the question where he wants. He seems to be doing that here, expounding on what the defense lawyer, Eric Nelson, probably hoped would be simple answers.

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April 5, 2021, 4:30 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:30 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Case in point, Nelson asked the chief if his problem with Derek Chauvin’s knee on George Floyd’s neck was the amount of time he held it there — over nine minutes — and the chief said that it was a whole host of factors. “Is the person a threat to the officer and others. What is the severity of the crime? Are you reevaluating and assessing the individual’s medical condition?” Probably not what the defense laywer wanted to hear.

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April 5, 2021, 4:28 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:28 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Court is back in session, with Derek Chauvin’s lawyer asking Chief Arradondo about the difference between a chokehold and a neck restraint. Chauvin is accused of killing George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for more than nine minutes. Earlier testimony from the Minneapolis police chief focused on the department’s use-of-force policies, with Arradondo saying that Chauvin violated them.

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April 5, 2021, 4:27 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:27 p.m. ET
Prosecutors quizzed Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, on Monday about his department's standards and training during the trial of former officer Derek Chauvin.
Prosecutors quizzed Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, on Monday about his department’s standards and training during the trial of former officer Derek Chauvin.Credit…Still image, via Court TV

In testimony that often seemed more like he was teaching a criminal law class, the Minneapolis police chief, Medaria Arradondo, spent more than two hours on Monday detailing the training his officers must complete and the standards they must comply with. Navigating jargon and statutes, his testimony in former officer Derek Chauvin’s trial is crucial in determining whether Mr. Chauvin is criminally responsible for George Floyd’s death.

The prosecution must show that Mr. Chauvin “acted unreasonably and out of the bounds” of his training and the standards set by Minnesota, said David Schultz, a law professor at the University of Minnesota. Prosecutors need to show he “went rogue.” If the defense can prove that Mr. Chauvin followed all protocols, then “the case is all over” for the prosecution, Mr. Schulz said.

Mr. Arradondo fired Mr. Chauvin and backed an F.B.I. investigation shortly after Mr. Floyd’s death, calling it a “murder.” His prior comments will very likely face scrutiny when Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric J. Nelson, cross-examines him.

Proving that Mr. Chauvin broke policy is one of the two most important tasks for prosecutors, Mr. Schultz said. The other is proving that Mr. Floyd died as a direct result of Mr. Chauvin kneeling on his neck and restraining him. The defense has argued instead that Mr. Floyd died of a combination of factors, including an overdose, and that Mr. Chauvin was following Minnesota policing standards.

Minnesota has fairly clear and high standards for police officers, and unlike other states, it licenses and regulates its police officers, Mr. Schultz said. The defense will remind the jury that police officers across the country have statutory authorization to use force by way of a Supreme Court decision on qualified immunity, Mr. Schultz said.

“What Arradondo and the other police officers last week are doing is saying that Chauvin wasn’t a responsible police officer” based on the standards and training he had received, Mr. Schultz said. “This is what they have to do to show he engaged in criminal activity” and therefore lost his qualified immunity, he said.

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April 5, 2021, 4:13 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 4:13 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

We’re on an afternoon break right now. We’ll be back with more cross examination of Chief Medaria Arradondo, who has said that Derek Chauvin’s use of force in the arrest of George Floyd was outside of department guidelines.

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April 5, 2021, 3:57 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:57 p.m. ET

By Matt Furber

The Lake Street corridor in June after the destruction caused by protests and looting after the death of George Floyd in May.
The Lake Street corridor in June after the destruction caused by protests and looting after the death of George Floyd in May.Credit…Alyssa Schukar for The New York Times

Luis Tamay, 38, came to Minnesota from Ecuador when he was 19, and he has made his life in south Minneapolis as the owner of a grocery store and restaurant. But he and his wife lost both businesses amid the violent protests in the area after George Floyd died in police custody.

He had just opened the restaurant, El Sabor Chuchi, in early May.

“I really miss the restaurant,” said Mr. Tamay, whose favorite dish is Encebollado Manaba, a seafood soup made with fresh tuna. “My birthday is May 8. I’ll always remember my big birthday present.”

He said he tried not to dwell on losing everything, including the equipment he used to produce his online radio station www.Lati2.com, which is back up and running but with a limited program.

Mr. Tamay used to broadcast live on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and had listeners from Ecuador to Spain. “It’s mostly for music and community talk,” he said. “People call in with music requests.”

Mr. Tamay and his wife have two sons, and they are expecting another child this summer. Although they lost their businesses in quick succession amid the violence and had dealt with a robbery in the past, they said they were committed to try to stay in the neighborhood.

The foundation of the building on Lake Street that housed their Ecuadorean restaurant and grocery store, as well as a hair braiding salon, a cellphone store and a money exchange business, was being excavated Friday morning.

“I feel really badly for everything people lost here,” the excavator operator, Bryan Ellis, 54, said between moving loads of broken concrete.

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April 5, 2021, 3:52 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:52 p.m. ET

Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs

Reporting from Minneapolis

Derek Chauvin’s lawyer is using his cross-examination of the Minneapolis police chief to argue, in part, that officers sometimes have to “escalate” situation in order to “de-escalate” it, such as by brandishing a gun to get a suspect to stop doing something. Chief Medaria Arradondo, who earlier testified that Chauvin had violated department use-of-force policies in his interaction with George Floyd, agreed that this is sometimes the case.

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April 5, 2021, 3:54 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:54 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Eric Nelson, Chauvin’s lawyer, seems to be trying to suggest that the officers actually pulled back on the amount of force they wanted to use by first suggesting putting George Floyd in a “maximum restraint” device and then not doing so. Much of this seems to be geared toward diverting attention from Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes.

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April 5, 2021, 3:33 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:33 p.m. ET
Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, testifying on Monday in the Derek Chauvin trial.
Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, testifying on Monday in the Derek Chauvin trial.Credit…Still image, via Court TV

The chief of the Minneapolis Police Department testified on Monday that Derek Chauvin had “absolutely” violated department policies when he knelt on George Floyd for more than nine minutes in May, saying Mr. Chauvin “should have stopped” when Mr. Floyd was calling out for help.

Chief Medaria Arradondo said in court that Mr. Chauvin, who has been charged with murder, had failed to follow department policies on use-of-force, de-escalation, and the duty to render aid to people who need it.

“I absolutely agree that violates our policy,” Chief Arradondo said in response to a prosecutor’s question about Mr. Chauvin’s actions. “That is not part of our policy; that is not what we teach.”

Chief Arradondo, who became the city’s first Black police chief when he took over in 2017, fired Mr. Chauvin and three other officers who were involved in the arrest within a day of Mr. Floyd’s death in May. The next month, he publicly called Mr. Floyd’s death a “murder.”

From the witness stand on Monday, the chief said that Mr. Chauvin’s actions might have been reasonable in the “first few seconds” to subdue Mr. Floyd, but that much of what he had done had violated policies.

“Once Mr. Floyd had stopped resisting, and certainly once he was in distress and trying to verbalize that, that should have stopped,” Chief Arradondo said.

During his cross-examination, Eric J. Nelson, Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, showed two 30-second videos of the arrest side-by-side — one from a police officer’s body camera and the other from the widely seen bystander video. Chief Arradondo agreed when Mr. Nelson asked if the body camera video — unlike the bystander video of the same moment — appeared to show that Mr. Chauvin’s knee was on Mr. Floyd’s shoulder blade, not his neck. But Chief Arradondo said that observation was referring only to a brief moment before Mr. Floyd was loaded onto a stretcher. Other than that time, Chief Arradondo said, it appeared that Mr. Chauvin’s knee was on Mr. Floyd’s neck.

Mr. Nelson also said that sometimes officers must “escalate to de-escalate,” such as by pulling out a gun to get someone to cooperate, and said the use-of-force is “not an attractive notion.” Chief Arradondo agreed with both sentiments.

“Use of force is something that most officers would rather not use, yes,” the chief said. He also agreed that, generally, someone can pose a threat while handcuffed.

Mr. Nelson suggested that when bystanders witness an officer using force, they could fall into a “crisis” that could distort their perception of what was happening. The chief agreed when Mr. Nelson asked, generally, if the tenor of a crowd could play affect an officer’s decision making.

Chief Arradondo recounted that he had first learned about the bystander video of the officers’ arrest when a community member sent him a message on May 25, just before midnight.

“Chief, have you seen the video of your officer choking and killing that man?” the message said, according to Mr. Arradondo, who said he remembered the words “almost verbatim.”

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April 5, 2021, 3:21 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:21 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

The Minneapolis police chief, Medaria Arradondo, provides the most stinging rebuke yet in this trial of Derek Chauvin’s use of force in the arrest of George Floyd, including kneeling on his neck: “Once Mr. Floyd had stopped resisting, and certainly once he was in distress and trying to verbalize that, that should have stopped.”

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April 5, 2021, 3:06 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:06 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

As Chief Arradondo attempted to say why he believed that American policing was “the best in the world,” he was cut off by an objection. The chief later explained that officers have a duty to care for someone in their custody, an important point because prosecutors will argue that Derek Chauvin was in dereliction of that duty when he restrained George Floyd as he cried that he couldn’t breathe.

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April 5, 2021, 3:07 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 3:07 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

“We have a duty of care, and so when someone’s in our custody, regardless of if they are a suspect, we have an obligation to make sure that we provide for their care,” the chief said.

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April 5, 2021, 2:56 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 2:56 p.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

Chief Arradondo, who is testifying about Minneapolis Police Department policies on the use of force, says that the type of offense for which the police were called on May 25 — George Floyd’s use of a suspected counterfeit $20 bill to buy cigarettes — would not normally result in taking someone into custody.

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April 5, 2021, 2:58 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 2:58 p.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

The prosecution is asking because they want to remind the jury of their argument that the use of force in this case was not proportional to Floyd’s alleged crime. Police body camera video played in court last week showed that officers initially approached Floyd with guns drawn.

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April 5, 2021, 2:54 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 2:54 p.m. ET
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On Monday, Chief Medaria Arradondo of the Minneapolis Police testified in the trial of Derek Chauvin. He outlined the training that officers receive, especially around issues involving the use of force.

Chief Medaria Arradondo of the Minneapolis Police Department spent much of the first part of his testimony walking jurors through the department’s policy on a range of matters, including officers’ use of force, allowing citizens to film the police and de-escalating difficult situations.

Chief Arradondo, who fired Derek Chauvin and three other officers who had been involved in the arrest of George Floyd, stressed that prioritizing the “sanctity of life” in the department’s use-of-force policy is vital.

“It is my firm belief that the one singular incident we will be judged forever on will be our use of force,” he said.

Chief Arradondo also emphasized that since May 2016, the department’s policies have explicitly told officers that they must allow the public to record them as long as people are not obstructing the officers’ actions.

Prosecutors also asked him several questions about de-escalation, which he said had become much more of a priority than it was in 1989, when he joined the department, when it “wasn’t mentioned.”

Chief Arradondo is expected to discuss the death of Mr. Floyd more directly during the afternoon.

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April 5, 2021, 2:37 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 2:37 p.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

The trial has resumed after lunch, and Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief who fired Derek Chauvin after George Floyd’s death, is talking about how officers can de-escalate potentially dangerous situations, including when suspects are dealing with behavioral crises, substance abuse or other issues.

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April 5, 2021, 2:24 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 2:24 p.m. ET

By Sean Plambeck

The Great Seal of the State of Minnesota displayed in Hennepin County District Court.
The Great Seal of the State of Minnesota displayed in Hennepin County District Court.Credit…Still image, via Court TV

During breaks or parts of the Derek Chauvin trial that cannot be broadcast, the camera delivering the live feed of the proceedings will often pan away to a copy of the Great Seal of the State of Minnesota that is affixed to the wall behind the judge.

For those wondering what they’re looking at, the phrase on the seal says, “L’Etoile du Nord,” which is French for “The Star of the North.”

As for the other images and symbols on it, the Minnesota secretary of state’s website says “the cultivated ground and plow symbolize the importance of agriculture” to the state while the Mississippi River and St. Anthony Falls are featured as a nod to its natural resources.

There are also three examples of the state tree, known as the red pine or the Norway pine, and the stump in the foreground is a recognition of Minnesota’s timber industry. The sun at the horizon is said to be shining across the plains that cover much of the state.

“The American Indian on horseback represents the great American Indian heritage of the state,” the website adds, “while the horse, spear, ax, rifle and plow represent important tools that were used for hunting and labor.”

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April 5, 2021, 1:31 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:31 p.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

Before lunch, Chief Arradondo was asked multiple questions about de-escalation, a policing strategy that has gained traction over the last 10 years and involves training officers to defuse a potentially dangerous situation rather than using force as a first reaction. The chief says that when he joined the force in 1989, de-escalation “wasn’t mentioned,” but made a point of saying that the policy now says that officers can “seek the community’s help” to calm things down. Derek Chauvin joined the force in 2001.

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April 5, 2021, 1:31 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:31 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Court is in recess for lunch break until 1:30 p.m. Central. Chief Medaria Arradondo will return to the stand to finish his testimony, which has largely focused so far on police training and procedure, as well as the responsibility of officers to the community.

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April 5, 2021, 1:29 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:29 p.m. ET
An image from a police body camera showing bystanders on May 25th.
An image from a police body camera showing bystanders on May 25th.Credit…Minneapolis Police Department, via Associated Press

One of the realities that police officers have to deal with in this day and age is that anyone can film their actions. And the Minneapolis police chief, Medaria Arradondo, said on the stand on Monday during the Derek Chauvin murder trial that bystanders were within their First Amendment rights to record officers, as long as they were not obstructing.

But in an interesting moment during the chief’s testimony, Steve Schleicher, a prosecutor questioning him, seemed to parse the difference between policy and reality. Mr. Schleicher suggested that officers could become irritated by people recording.

“Is that obstruction?” he asked. “It is not,” the chief responded.

Of course, bystander recordings are crucial in this case, as George Floyd’s death became a global rallying cry for racial justice because of a disturbing video capturing his final moments.

Mr. Chauvin’s defense lawyer has tried to argue that the eyewitnesses became an angry mob that disrupted his client from doing his job. The prosecution, however, seems to be trying to lay the groundwork to suggest that the bystanders were doing exactly what they were entitled to do — film a police interaction.

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April 5, 2021, 1:01 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:01 p.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

The prosecution is really dragging out Chief Arradondo’s testimony, likely in part because it’s so unusual to have a police chief testifying against a former police officer. I’ve been searching around for another example of this happening, and I haven’t found one that’s comparable yet, except for Arradondo himself, who testified in the trial of Mohamed Noor for the on-duty murder of Justine Damond in Minneapolis.

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April 5, 2021, 1:04 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:04 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

It’s also important that he expounds on how much training officers receive, because prosecutors haven’t really established that yet. Arguing that Derek Chauvin’s actions during George Floyd’s arrest violated police procedure is a key part of their murder case against him.

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April 5, 2021, 1:00 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:00 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

The police chief, who is testifying about department training in a very measured, matter-of-fact manner, is known to be a cool customer. He is well respected in Minneapolis; I’ve heard several people say that Chief Arradondo is fine, but he’s part of a system that can’t be reformed.

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April 5, 2021, 1:02 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 1:02 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

One challenge for the chief: Threading the needle by having to condemn the actions of one of his former officers, Derek Chauvin, whom he fired after George Floyd’s death, but also defending the institution of policing as a whole as necessary and good.

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April 5, 2021, 12:48 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:48 p.m. ET
A mural honoring George Floyd in the Third Ward, the neighborhood where Mr. Floyd grew up, in Houston, Texas.
A mural honoring George Floyd in the Third Ward, the neighborhood where Mr. Floyd grew up, in Houston, Texas. Credit…Callaghan O’Hare for The New York Times

Body camera footage of George Floyd’s death captured one of the officers saying that he was “concerned about excited delirium or whatever,” invoking a longstanding controversy over a term that is often cited in police custody deaths. Some experts insist that excited delirium syndrome is a genuine medical condition, while others say it is simply an excuse for police brutality.

In opening statements, the defense mentioned excited delirium only in passing but did say that a contributing factor to Floyd’s death wasthe adrenaline flowing through his body.”

There is no generally accepted definition of excited delirium, according to a 2018 review of the scientific literature, but the term is used to describe someone who becomes distressed or aggressive from a mental illness or the use of psychoactive drugs.

It is not included in the International Classification of Diseases or the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders but has been recognized by the National Association of Medical Examiners and the American College of Emergency Physicians.

According to a report by the Brookings Institution, the term is disproportionately applied to Black people and was first used in 1985 to explain a series of sudden deaths in cocaine users, occurring primarily while in police custody, and again to explain the deaths of 32 Black women in Miami in the 1980s, who were later determined to have been asphyxiated by a serial killer.

On the stand on Monday, Dr. Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, who tried to resuscitate Mr. Floyd in the emergency room and pronounced him dead, said he had considered but ultimately rejected excited delirium as a contributing factor in his death, conceding that it was a “controversial diagnosis.”

There was no report that Mr. Floyd had ever been “very sweaty” or “extremely agitated,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of cases of mental health crises or drug use leading to severe agitated states,” he said. “That is almost always reported by paramedics, and so the absence of that information was telling.”

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April 5, 2021, 12:39 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:39 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

To show Chief Medaria Arradondo’s experience and familiarity with all facets of the Minneapolis Police Department, the prosecution led him through a long list of his credentials. He has been with the department since 1989, climbing through the ranks from patrol officer to inspector to deputy chief to, now, chief. He is the first African-American to hold the position. Earlier in his career, Mr. Arradondo sued his own department, accusing the leadership of tolerating racism.

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April 5, 2021, 12:46 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:46 p.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

He has also worked in internal affairs, which investigates reports of misconduct by police officers.

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April 5, 2021, 12:21 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:21 p.m. ET
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George Floyd’s Emergency Room Physician Testifies in Chauvin Trial

Dr. Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, the emergency room physician who cared for George Floyd the day he died, testified about Mr. Floyd’s condition when he reached the hospital.

“When Mr. Floyd’s body, when Mr. Floyd was brought in, would you describe it as an emergency situation?” “Yes, absolutely.” “What was his condition in terms of his cardiac condition?” “He was in cardiac arrest.” “Does cardiac arrest mean that he had had a heart attack or what does that mean?” “Not –” “Overruled.” “Not necessarily.” “What does cardiac arrest technically mean?” “Cardiac arrest is defined as sudden cessation of blood flow to all the tissues of the body — when the heart stops pumping — typically, as evidenced by the absence of a carotid pulse.” “So in lay people’s terms, if we were to say cardiac arrest means the heart stopped, would that be accurate?” “That’s — yes.” “What information was provided to you for his care and treatment by Zipit?” “The information was that it was a 30-year-old unidentified male, who was in cardiac arrest. And that’s as much as I can recall at this time.” “Do you recall whether any information was given to you as to what may have happened to him ahead of time before he got there to explain the cardiac arrest?” “Not, not at the time. Not, not before he got there.”

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Dr. Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, the emergency room physician who cared for George Floyd the day he died, testified about Mr. Floyd’s condition when he reached the hospital.CreditCredit…Still image from Court TV

An emergency room doctor who tried to save George Floyd’s life for 30 minutes before pronouncing him dead testified on Monday that he believed Mr. Floyd had most likely died of a lack of oxygen, bolstering a central argument of the prosecution.

Dr. Bradford T. Wankhede Langenfeld, who was a senior resident at the Hennepin County Medical Center, testified in court that Mr. Floyd’s heart was not beating by the time he arrived at the hospital on that day in May. His testimony followed those of two paramedics who said last week that Mr. Floyd’s heart had stopped by the time they arrived to the scene of his arrest. The doctor’s testimony came on the sixth day of the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former police officer charged with murdering Mr. Floyd.

The doctor said that, based on the information he had at the time, he thought that oxygen deficiency, sometimes called asphyxia, was “one of the more likely” causes of Mr. Floyd’s death.

Prosecutors had said Mr. Floyd died of asphyxia, appearing to divert from the ruling of the county medical examiner who performed an autopsy on Mr. Floyd and said that he had died of “cardiopulmonary arrest.” That term, prosecutors have said, is applicable to any death because it simply means that a person’s heart and lungs have stopped.

Eric J. Nelson, Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, had suggested that Mr. Floyd’s death was caused in part by his underlying heart disease and the fentanyl and methamphetamine that were found in his system. In response to questions from Mr. Nelson, Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld agreed that many different things — including taking fentanyl and methamphetamine — could cause a death that would still be considered asphyxiation.

Mr. Nelson used his questioning to press Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld on the fact that naloxone, the overdose-reversing treatment often known as Narcan, was never administered to Mr. Floyd. Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld said that even if Mr. Floyd had suffered an overdose, giving him naloxone would have had “no benefit” because his heart had already stopped.

Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld said he had viewed an overdose as a less likely cause of Mr. Floyd’s death, in part because the paramedics who brought Mr. Floyd to the hospital had given no indication that he had overdosed.

Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld said that he had pronounced Mr. Floyd dead after about 30 minutes in the emergency department. Mr. Floyd’s official time of death is 9:25 p.m.

Jerry W. Blackwell, the prosecutor questioning Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld, used some of his questions to emphasize that Mr. Chauvin and other police officers at the scene had not given medical care to Mr. Floyd.

In response to the questions, Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld noted that beginning C.P.R. as soon as possible was critical for patients who were in cardiac arrest, as Mr. Floyd was. He said that there is about a 10 to 15 percent decrease in a patient’s chance of survival for every minute that C.P.R. is not administered.

“It’s well-known that any amount of time that a patient spends in cardiac arrest without immediate C.P.R. markedly decreases the chance of a good outcome,” Dr. Wankhede Langenfeld said. He noted that the term “cardiac arrest” means only that a patient’s heart had stopped, not that the patient necessarily had a heart attack.

The doctor, who is in his early 30s, earned his medical degree from the University of Minnesota Medical School in 2016 and had received his physician and surgeon license just 18 days before May 25, when Mr. Floyd was rushed to the hospital, according to state records.

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April 5, 2021, 12:20 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:20 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Medaria Arradondo, the police chief of Minneapolis on the stand right now, is in many ways speaking to the city, not just the 12 jurors. He is explaining the duty that his officers have to the city, where he grew up. In the 10 months since George Floyd’s death, residents and community leaders in Minneapolis have struggled to reach consensus on how to radically change public safety, and the role that the police should play in that.

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April 5, 2021, 12:21 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:21 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

On the stand, the chief tugged his badge several times as he talked about the duties of police officers, saying: “The first time that we interact with our community members may be the only time that they have an interaction. That has to count for something. It’s very important for us to make sure that we’re meeting our community in that space, treating them with dignity, being their guardians.”

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April 5, 2021, 12:14 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:14 p.m. ET
Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis Police Chief, testified on Monday
Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis Police Chief, testified on MondayCredit…Pool photo by Richard Tsong-Taatarii

The prosecution called Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief, to testify on Monday. He was expected to testify that Derek Chauvin’s use of force was contrary to department policy and training.

Less than a day after George Floyd’s death, Mr. Arradondo fired Mr. Chauvin and three other officers who were present at the scene and called for an F.B.I. investigation into the incident. He openly condemned Mr. Chauvin’s actions and called Mr. Floyd’s death a “murder.”

Mr. Arradondo joined the Minneapolis Police Department in 1989 as a patrol officer and was appointed chief of police in 2017 after his predecessor was forced out in the wake of a controversial killing of a woman by a police officer that year. He is the first African-American to hold the position.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Arradondo sued his own department, accusing the leadership of tolerating racism.

Mr. Floyd’s killing fueled calls for police reform and a pledge by a majority of the City Council to dismantle the department, and since then Chief Arradondo has worked with Mayor Jacob Frey to pass several reforms, including a revamped use-of-force policy.

Chief Arradondo testified in the trial of Mohamed Noor, the officer who was convicted of murder after he fatally shot Justine Ruszczyk in 2017, MPR News reported. At the time of Ms. Ruszczyk’s death, Chief Arradondo was the assistant chief.

After Ms. Ruszczyk was killed, several changes were implemented in the department, including a requirement that Minneapolis police officers turn on their body cameras as soon as they start responding to 911 calls.

Many Minnesotans have said they have confidence in Chief Arradondo, saying he has shown an appetite for change that past police leaders have not.

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April 5, 2021, 12:14 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:14 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

Prosecutors have now called Medaria Arradondo, the Minneapolis police chief who fired Derek Chauvin and three other officers the day after George Floyd died, to testify. It’s a significant moment to have a sitting chief testifying against one of his former officers, but Chief Arradondo has done it before, in the trial of Mohamed Noor, who was convicted of killing Justine Damond in 2017. Chief Arradondo has called Floyd’s death a “murder.”

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April 5, 2021, 12:10 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:10 p.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

The defense is now questioning Dr. Langenfeld, who treated George Floyd in the emergency room, trying to suggest that the drugs that Floyd had in his system, including fentanyl, could have affected his breathing and led to his death. The defense has made it clear that it is going to argue that it was Floyd’s drug use, not pressure from Derek Chauvin’s knee on his neck, that killed him.

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April 5, 2021, 12:08 p.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 12:08 p.m. ET

The trial began in an odd fashion on Monday. The entire jury was brought in for questioning, and Judge Peter A. Cahill had the audio and video feeds turned off. But according to a pool reporter in the room, each of the jurors had a sheet of paper in front of them with a social media post that the judge instructed them to read.

He noted that on the sheet there was a comment about halfway through. He asked the jurors if any of them made a statement, or something similar to it, that was apparently in the social media post.

Thirteen of the 14 jurors raised their hands to indicate that they had not said anything like what was indicated (the specific statement was not shared publicly). The 14th juror shook her head no and eventually raised her hand.

The judge then had them flip over the sheet and asked them if they recognized the picture of the person on the sheet. All 14 jurors raised their hands to indicate that they did not recognize the person. After the jurors left, the judge indicated that he believed the jurors were credible.

“This was nothing more than social media nonsense,” he said.

Jurors are not supposed to discuss the case with anyone — even among each other — or read any coverage of the trial while it is going on.

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April 5, 2021, 11:34 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 11:34 a.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

Dr. Langenfeld, the emergency room doctor who treated George Floyd, just brought up what I think is the first mention in this trial of “excited delirium,” a controversial condition that is often cited in cases where people die at the hands of the police. Dr. Langenfeld said he considered, but essentially rejected, excited delirium as a factor in Floyd’s death because the paramedics did not report signs of the condition, such as heavy sweating.

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April 5, 2021, 11:35 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 11:35 a.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

The doctor, who pronounced George Floyd dead, said he believed that Floyd’s death was caused by oxygen deficiency, or “asphyxia.” That’s a pretty big statement because the prosecution has indicated that it would argue that asphyxia was the cause of death, a departure from what the medical examiner ruled.

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April 5, 2021, 11:16 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 11:16 a.m. ET
A padlock with George Floyd's name is displayed at the Hennepin County Government Center.
A padlock with George Floyd’s name is displayed at the Hennepin County Government Center.Credit…Octavio Jones/Reuters

George Floyd’s cause of death is a central issue in the Derek Chauvin trial. The prosecution has already signaled that they will argue Mr. Floyd was asphyxiated by the police. To do that, they have to overcome the medical examiner’s statement that Mr. Floyd died of “cardiopulmonary arrest,” a term they have argued is applicable to any death because it simply means that the person’s heart and lungs have stopped.

They also have to overcome the defense’s argument that Mr. Floyd had underlying heart disease that contributed to his death. They are using the witness who took the stand Monday morning, an emergency room physician who tried to resuscitate Mr. Floyd when he was brought in, to lay some of that groundwork.

Jerry Blackwell, the lawyer for the prosecution, asked the doctor, Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, to explain what cardiac arrest was. “So in laypeople’s terms, if we were to say cardiac arrest means the heart stopped, would that be accurate?” Mr. Blackwell asked. “Yes,” the doctor replied. Mr. Blackwell also asked if the doctor had been told there was any indication that Mr. Floyd had sustained a heart attack. Dr. Langenfeld said there was no such indication.

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April 5, 2021, 11:01 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 11:01 a.m. ET

John Eligon

Reporting from Minneapolis

It’s important to remember that at the time George Floyd arrived at the emergency room, he was just another patient. In fact, the doctor who treated him there and pronounced him dead, Dr. Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, testified that he got a text message identifying the incoming patient as 30 years old. He was actually 46.

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April 5, 2021, 10:51 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:51 a.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

The prosecution is now calling to the stand Dr. Bradford Wankhede Langenfeld, the emergency rooom doctor at the Hennepin County Medical Center who pronounced George Floyd dead. Last week, the paramedics who arrived at the scene of Floyd’s arrest testified that they could not find a pulse.

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April 5, 2021, 10:57 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:57 a.m. ET

Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs

Reporting from Minneapolis

The doctor was a senior resident at the time. He received his physician and surgeon license just 18 days before Floyd’s death and says he has never had to testify in court before.

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April 5, 2021, 10:48 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:48 a.m. ET
At left, Eric J. Nelson, the defense lawyer for  Derek Chauvin, right, at Hennepin County District Court on Monday.
At left, Eric J. Nelson, the defense lawyer for Derek Chauvin, right, at Hennepin County District Court on Monday.Credit…Still image, via Court TV

The prosecution’s case has moved into its second phase, the issue of whether Derek Chauvin was acting against police policy and his training when he knelt on George Floyd for more than nine minutes. On Friday, they presented Lt. Richard Zimmerman, the longest-serving officer on the Minneapolis police force, and later they will present Chief Medaria Arradondo and other experts on police training.

To counteract this, Eric J. Nelson, the defense lawyer, is trying to limit this testimony. First, he has raised the issue of whether the state has too many witnesses, from both inside and outside the department, who may offer what he is arguing will be too many opinions about what a reasonable officer would have done. He wants to limit that.

He is also arguing that although Chauvin, a veteran Minneapolis police officer at the time of Mr. Floyd’s death, had close to 900 hours of training, it is impossible to reconstruct exactly which PowerPoint presentations Chauvin actually saw. The judge, Peter A. Cahill, is indicating that he will not allow the prosecution to go on and on, asking officer after officer what they would have done in the same situation.

After Chief Arradondo, an officer from the training unit, and two use-of-force experts, the judge says, “We’re done with asking other officers about the use of force.”

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April 5, 2021, 10:24 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:24 a.m. ET

Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs

Reporting from Minneapolis

Derek Chauvin’s lawyer says Chief Medaria Arradondo of the Minneapolis Police Department will be called by prosecutors to testify today. He fired Chauvin and three other officers the day after George Floyd died and has called Floyd’s death a “murder.”

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April 5, 2021, 10:27 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:27 a.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

It is highly unusual for a police chief to testify for the prosecution against a police officer, but Chief Arradondo has done it before, in the trial of Mohamed Noor, who was convicted of killing Justine Damond in 2017.

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April 5, 2021, 10:15 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:15 a.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

The judge announced this morning that the court is going off audio and video. He will explain this decision later. Last week, some witnesses who were minors at the time of George Floyd’s death were allowed to testify off camera, but with audio.

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April 5, 2021, 10:22 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:22 a.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

It now looks like there might have been some report of juror misconduct. Judge Peter A. Cahill went off camera, and when he came back on he said that he had ascertained that no juror misconduct had occurred.

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April 5, 2021, 10:23 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:23 a.m. ET

Shaila Dewan

Reporting from New York

There are two journalists serving as pool reporters in the courtroom, who will likely provide more information about what just happened off camera at the next trial break.

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April 5, 2021, 10:07 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 10:07 a.m. ET

Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs

Reporting from Minneapolis

Day 6 of the murder trial of Derek Chauvin has begun, with prosecutors and a defense lawyer arguing over whether certain footage from body cameras worn by police officers on the day of George Floyd’s death can be allowed as evidence. A prosecutor says some of the videos, which show officers discussing Floyd’s use of a fake $20 bill, should be excluded because they are irrelevant. Video evidence played a major role in the first week of the trial.

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April 5, 2021, 5:05 a.m. ETApril 5, 2021, 5:05 a.m. ET
Cayden Totushek affixes roses to a new art piece by Visual Black Justice placed in the courtyard outside of the Hennepin County Government Center.
Cayden Totushek affixes roses to a new art piece by Visual Black Justice placed in the courtyard outside of the Hennepin County Government Center.Credit…Aaron Nesheim for The New York Times

The second week of testimony will begin on Monday in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged with murdering George Floyd, and the prosecution is expected to continue to call on veteran officers who were critical of Mr. Chauvin’s restraint of Mr. Floyd, including the police chief Medaria Arradondo.

On Friday, Lt. Richard Zimmerman, the longest-serving officer on the Minneapolis police force, testified that Mr. Chauvin’s actions were “totally unnecessary” and in violation of police policy. “Pulling him down to the ground facedown and putting your knee on a neck for that amount of time, it’s just uncalled-for,” he said.

As the nation watched last week, witness after witness described an acute sense of lingering pain. The often tearful testimony during the trial’s opening week highlighted how the trauma of May 25, when Mr. Chauvin knelt on Mr. Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, rippled outward and left witnesses burdened with guilt and crippling self-doubt.

“It was difficult because I felt like there wasn’t really anything I could do,” testified Alyssa Funari, 18, who filmed Mr. Floyd’s arrest.

Prosecutors call all of their witnesses before the defense begins to lay out its case, so the trial’s first week was heavily weighted toward the state’s arguments. Their case was expected to be presented in three phases, focused on witness testimony, police policies and medical evidence.

Eric J. Nelson, the lawyer for Mr. Chauvin, made clear that he would attempt to convince jurors that the videos of Mr. Floyd’s death and the emotional witness testimony did not tell the full story. He signaled that he planned to argue that Mr. Chauvin had been following his training as a police officer, that his knee was not necessarily on Mr. Floyd’s neck, and that Mr. Floyd’s death may have been caused by drugs.

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April 2, 2021, 1:30 p.m. ETApril 2, 2021, 1:30 p.m. ET
Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo speaking at a news conference during jury selection for the trial of Derek Chauvin.
Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo speaking at a news conference during jury selection for the trial of Derek Chauvin.Credit…Nicholas Pfosi/Reuters

George Floyd’s death vastly compounded public anger at the Minneapolis Police Department. But conflict was present before officers ever came in contact with Mr. Floyd — so much so that the department’s own chief, Medaria Arradondo, the first Black person to hold the position, had once filed a lawsuit accusing it of tolerating racism.

Only about 20 percent of Minneapolis residents are Black, but about 60 percent of use-of-force incidents with the Minneapolis police involve Black people, according to a New York Times analysis. The city’s police officers use force against Black people at seven times the rate of white people.

Body-weight pinning, which Derek Chauvin used on Mr. Floyd, is one of the most popular use-of-force mechanisms in Minneapolis, and it, too, is employed in a racially disparate way. Since 2015, Minneapolis officers have used it about 2,200 times against Black people, more than twice as many times as they have used it against white people.

The influence of the city’s police union, the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, has made reforming the department a struggle, some analysts say. But since Mr. Floyd’s death, there have been some limited changes.

In December 2020, the Minneapolis City Council voted to divert $8 million dollars — almost 4.5 percent — from a proposed $179 million police budget. The diverted funds will go to the city’s Office of Violence Prevention, with the goal of building a team of mental health professionals and city workers to respond to crises and process minor complaints without police involvement.

Before Mr. Floyd, numerous others had reported abuse at the hands of Mr. Chauvin, including Zoya Code, who said Mr. Chauvin had forced her to the ground with his knee on her after he answered a call in a domestic dispute. Over almost 20 years with the police department, Mr. Chauvin had at least 22 complaints or internal investigations, but only one resulted in discipline.

That pattern is common: Since 2012, only 1 percent of adjudicated complaints against Minneapolis police officers resulted in disciplinary action, according to city records.

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