tv Day 7 of Trial for Derek Chauvin Accused in Death of George Floyd CSPAN April 6, 2021 11:56am-12:17pm EDT
>> watching live coverage here on c-span2 of the seventh day of the trial of former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin charged in the death of george floyd. we're going to bring you back to the courtroom when they return live. you can also watch live online at c-span.org. if you miss any of the proceedings throughout the day, you can also watch the day's testimony at 8 p.m. eastern time, and we'll have have that here on c-span2. while they're in a break, we've been looking back at some of the testimony from earlier starting off the day today before jurors were seated, lawyers discussed whether or not to call george floyd's friend maurice lester hall to testify. he was in the car at the time mr. floyd was pulled out and pinned to the ground. we'll take a look at this morning's testimony. >> -- on a motion from witness maurice hall. could you spell your name because we've gotten different spellings on your name. >> the correct spelling for you
guys would be morris hall. >> all right. and representing mr. hall today -- [inaudible] >> morning, your honor can -- [inaudible] >> mr. hall, your attorneys are present. when they address the court, you're going to go to the podium, so you should be able to see them at that time. but, obviously, we are not a position where you can consult privately with them today, had a chance -- you've had a chance to talk with them, is that correct? >> [inaudible] >> all right, thank you. all right. this is mr. hall's motion as a witness to quash the subpoena. who would like to address it? ms. cousins, if you would. and you can take off your mask, if you'd like. >> thank you, judge. good morning, your honor. >> morning.
>> mr. hall has been subpoenaed as a witness in this case by both the prosecution and defense. defense counsel can in their opening statement specifically named mr. hall and told the jury that they intend the call him and previewed what that testimony they believed would be. so in order to avoid any kind of delay or interpretation in these proceedings, i notified all parties that mr. hall would be invoking his fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination were he called to testify. i then subsequently filed my notice, my motion to quash the subpoena. your honor, at this point in time mr. hall has no immunity. he has been provided no immunity, no protection for his testimony whatsoever. and because of that, mr. hall is invoking his fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination in several key areas of questioning that we believe he would face were he to be called to testify. >> well, let's stop you there.
he's had -- certain areas that he would testify to, so there are some topics that would not incriminate him, is that correct? >> your honor, i cannot envision any topics that mr. hall would be called to testify on that would be both relevant to the case that would not incriminate him. >> well, that's ultimately the court's decision, correct? >> yes. >> okay. on a question-by-question basis, is that correct? >> yes, your honor. >> okay. all right. go ahead. i interrupted you. >> no, that's okay, judge. and just for brevity, i wanted to outline those areas that i believe many hall fay -- mr. hall may face questioning. the first area where he would be invoking his privilege against self-incrimination is any activities that took place on may 25th, 2020, both before and after police arrived. >> okay. >> hall's testimony in these -- mr. hall's testimony in these matters would specifically put him in the position of being in
very close proximity to mr. floyd. there's an allegation here that mr. floyd ingested a controlled substance as police were removing him from the car. a car, by the way, that has been searched twice, and to my understanding, drugs have been found in that car twice. this leaves mr. hall potentially incriminating himself into a future prosecution for third-degree murder and specifically that 609.195 subdivision b, and that statute, as the court is well aware, covers third-degree liability. ..
that statute is broad and it has been interpreted broadly. again it's not just a and b situation. in fact, anyone who can be pointed to a link in the chain of distribution and to prepare structs or someone else, someone who acts as a go-between can be implicated in third-degree murder. so any of the activities that mr. hall would be testifying about throughout that day and including before police arrived on may 25, 2020 could potentially incriminate him in in that charge. not to mention drug sales and drug use. additionally the other area of testament and which mr. hall would be invoking his fifth amendment privilege is any personal knowledge that he has of drug use by george floyd up until and including may 25 for the exact same reason, judge. it leaves him open to exposure of potential future third-degree
murder charge. any testimony regarding his activities with mr. floyd to leave him open to potentially incriminating himself. >> i think what i'm going to do, ask mr. nelson to list for the court the topics and areas, whether there's something outside what you just outlined. so maybe there is some common ground here if you could just switch places. >> your honor, it would be the defense intent to inquire of mistral as to the following,, certainly in the events leading up to mr. hall and mr. floyd's arrival at cup foods earlier in the day, where they were, what they were doing. mr. hall's interactions with mr. floyd in the cup foods including whether either party gave the
other a counterfeit bill. whether or not mr. hall gave, sold, or otherwise provided mr. floyd with controlled substance substances. specifically, whether mr. floyd, his behavior in the car with mr. hall prepa's described, mr. floyd was falling asleep, that it was sudden. i would ask him questions about mr. hall's previous statements to law enforcement that mr. floyd had indicated he did not intend to, or he was planning on taking these pills later when they got home, implying that mr. floyd took them before they left. mr. hall described seeing mr. floyd go for the ignition with the police arrived so his behaviors in the car at the time police arrived. mr. hall, i would intend to ask him about giving false names to
police officers after they were intervened come after the police intervened. mr. hall was seen on a security camera taking something out of his backpack and throwing it. i would ask him about those and what it was that he threw and i would also ask mr. hall about his decision to leave minnesota immediately after this incident. and his subsequent apprehension by the texas rangers. >> well, let me focus on a couple of things. i think you would agree that any questions that he answers about the counterfeit bill falls within, could incriminate him, would you agree with that? >> yes. >> also the false information he gave to the police, he would have illegitimate invocation of his fifth amendment rights there as well? >> yes. >> and what he took out of the backpack, that's a legitimate fifth amendment privilege to invoke their. >> yes.
>> flight as circumstantial evidence of guilt you would agree that is fleeing to texas if you went into motive as opposed to simply traveling to taxes that that could be considered incriminating, , woud you agree with that? >> yes. >> the use and possession of drugs by both of them during that day, that could incriminate him based on councils representation, would you agree with that? >> yes. >> it seems like just about everything you want to ask him except the following come he would have a legitimate right to invoke his fifth amendment rights against compelled self-incrimination and that being how george floyd appeared when he was back in the car and falling asleep suddenly. would you -- >> well, i mean, -- >> i'm sure counsel with say that is incriminating, but -- >> i do not believe that that in and of itself incriminate mr.
hall in terms of a description of mr. floyd falling asleep, , t the implication being that because fentanyl was found in mr. floyd system, and it causes a person to fall asleep, that that would be ostensibly connected to ingestion of controlled substances. remotely perhaps i would argue but not in and of itself. >> all right. ms. cousins, would you -- >> and, unfortunately, you have the benefit of having sat here through all the testimony but it appears that this would be a a proper indication of his fifth amendment rights for just about everything mr. nelson was talking about. the one exception appears to be his observations sitting in the passenger's seat of the car as mr. floyd appeared, but he was falling asleep and that happened
suddenly. very narrow, and the reason why i say that is because we have kind of a parallel testimony from a a clerk in the store wo said mr. floyd appeared good-natured, seem to be having a good day when he did appear to be high. i don't even think i would allow counsel to ask whether he appeared high because that could inform some kind of opinion and into her a basis that he knew why he was under the influence. but it seems to me that just his description, mr. hall's description of like the store clerk, is not going to incriminate him if there was no questioning about how he had, why he fell asleep, why he thinks he fell asleep, that there were drugs in the car, that he knew there were drugs in the car, that there was any possession by mr. floyd of drugs that he saw. if we totally avoid were drugs and have mr. hall's say i was a passenger in the car, which is already clear, there's video and
evidence just for your knowledge that mr. hall is in the passenger's seat and is removed by the police. the on that -- beyond that, if that was established was a passenger when the police came up to the car, what was mr. floyd's condition immediately that he observed immediately before that? would you agree that that's not incriminating if we keep all the mention of drugs or white or anything like that? >> know you're on a do not agree. >> how would that when it did not incriminate the clerk who said he thought he was high, w would it be that mr. hall's thing that would incriminate? >> will because first of all the inquiry is not what evidence is in front of the jury. what testimony have they heard. >> i'm just using that as an analogy on how come you didn't incriminate the store clerk by saying he appeared high. well, mr. hall's saying he appeared like he was falling asleep and it happened suddenly, without anything else it's a
look at evidence. i was using it as an analogy. >> i understand but whole point here is to prevent mistral from incriminating himself and him even answering that question that he was in the car puts him in very close proximity with mr. floyd, in very close in time before he is alleged to have ingested drugs. and again it exposes him on the third degree murder charge. if there were to be future third-degree murder charge and mr. hall was charged with basically being involved in this drug activity that had caused mr. floyd to pass we do to an overdose, him even being in that car incriminate him in terms of behaviors of mr. floyd, what he observed when he observed it. so no, your honor, i would argue that it definitely would expose him to potential incrimination. not to mention that this is a that a car were drugs have been found twice for the state has all the evidence. that's pretty clear and i know we're not talking about -- but
that didn't incriminate him. the video of him sitting next to george floyd does not incriminate him or has not subjected him to criminal liability at least yet. beyond that -- >> that's the key word is yet. is yet. >> do you think his observations out george floyd look what incriminate him? title see how that would put him closer to criminal liability just observation. >> because it then takes the onus off the state in any future prosecutions to prove what demeanors, behavior, attitudes mr. floyd was exhibiting should they decide to charge mr. hall with a crime. now they have his own testimony to use against him. that's the very definition of the fifth amendment privilege. >> if it incriminate. >> yes. >> just the fact he testifies does not make it incriminating. >> by this testimony would be used to incriminate him in any future prosecution. >> well anyway, mr. frank, do you need to weigh in on this? i don't think you have a dog in a fight at this point expert i would like to be heard briefly.
>> sure. >> thank you your honor. >> you are not representing his interest, are you? >> i am not. our dog in the fight is a fair trial for mr. chauvin. >> of course. >> one trout. child. what we can have is indication of this privilege in front of the jury. and this questioning that the court is offering or suggesting creates a huge problem and the reason what i cited the caldwell case to the court is because this question would not exist in a vacuum. we have to remember that the standard is not just whether this evidence itself is inculpatory or implicates him. it's whether it creates a link. i think that's partly what ms. cousins is referring to is it now puts him in that vehicle and its testimony from he
himself creating a part of that link. as i said it won't exist in a vacuum. there would be other questioning and we would have the right to question him about his credibility and other aspects of that interaction then that would lead, unfortunately and potentially, to him invoking question by question in front of the jury. >> we -- in fact, in this case in excruciating detail walk-through motions in limine limiting what questions could be asked of various witnesses based on will of evidence. this is not based on rules of evidence. it is based on his fifth fifth amendment rights, could possibly incriminate him. but limitations, jeff to admit, we can tell you the caldwell case is a totally different situation. that is a man wanted to testify despite being warned and didn't there until he realized it might
getting into more trouble than he thought. i think it's the completely opposite of this case. >> it's an illustration, your honor, of how despite that witness trying to kill his evidence to meet a certain goal, it just couldn't be done and led to an fortunate in that case it wasn't a jury sitting there but invocation, that's what ended up in that case. we can have that when we're in front of a jury. and mr. hall would be faced with a question by question determination of what we argue about this morning. that's why sort of blanket invocation is allowed because the standard is rather broad. >> what case law says that there such a fate as a blanket invocation a fifth amendment right? >> i can't cite the case that has yet -- >> i'll admit -- and i will admit i don't think there's clear minnesota case law on it but i'm looking at illinois, the
northern district of illinois, or a gun, i think a light as well, a couple of cases to take a look at, hillman versus city of chicago, northern district of illinois. oregon versus rodriguez, 301 oregon appellate, 404, shackman versus democratic organization of cook county. it's pretty clear from those cases and created their not minnesota, that the invocation of the fifth amendment right is on a question by question basis and a legitimacy of that invocation is to be determined by the court which makes sense. otherwise some of you who just didn't want to testify could say i'm asserting my fifth amendment right. >> i agree with that concept, your honor. we cited the case with the talked about for dear process and essentially this hearing is
a substitute for the process because we know from his counsel that he is going to invoke the fifth amendment about the dirt areas she discussed and are just is no legitimate way. it isn't really any question that all of the matters that counsel identified and mr. nelson identified are tied intimately to his interactions with mr. floyd that day and in the previous weeks, and it ties empirics we're not facing a question like brats in most cases where it might just be invoking because you don't want to testify. here there is a legitimate link in the chain what is going to be asked about, and quite a few potential crimes not just the third-degree murder obviously being the most important. we even know, we've talked about the sense of opposing counsel has suggested almost an alternative perpetrator, and in that sense with the third-degree murder but also drug charges, counterfeiting, false information.
i don't know how we put on mr. holtz-eakin spot and asked him one question and then let him believe without having the ability to pursue as we normally would in a trial the credibility and the foundation for that testimony in light of all we know. so i think that this case doesn't raise the kinds of questions that may be are being brought up in the cases the court cited. i'm sorry i can't speak to them personally right now, but here there is no question that the singular question the court is inquiring about our intimately linked to george floyd and the activities of the day, all the other areas that -- >> if you look at the case laws, much closer -- >> we left off, you're looking at exhibit 119, 119, page e are starting to discuss what your training is regarding handcuffing. could you please explain to the jury