Judge denies defense motion for a new trial for Derek Chauvin

Judge Peter Cahill
Judge Peter Cahill during the trial of former MPD Officer Derek Chauvin Photo credit Credit: CourtTV POOL

A few hours before the sentencing of Derek Chauvin is scheduled to begin, Judge Peter Cahill has already made a ruling.

Cahill denied the defense’s motion for a new trial. He also denied the motion for a Schwartz hearing over possible jury misconduct.

In the denial the court ruled on these three requests:

1.     Defendant has failed to demonstrate that the Court abused its discretion or committed error such that Defendant was deprived of his constitutional right to a fair trial.

2.     Defendant has failed to demonstrate that the State engaged in prosecutorial misconduct such that Defendant was deprived of his constitutional right to a fair trial.

3.     Defendant has failed to establish a prima facie case of juror misconduct or that a juror gave false testimony during voir dire to warrant an evidentiary hearing pursuant to Schwartz v. Minneapolis Suburban Bus Co., 104 N.W.2d 301 (Minn. 1960); State v. Usee, 800 N.W.2d 192

A Schwartz hearing is a procedure for determining whether an outside influence has had a prejudicial effect on the jury. There were complaints from Chauvin’s defense team during the trial that the city of Minneapolis’ settling of a civil case with Floyd’s family plus the media attention the case received was influencing the jury, something Cahill has repeatedly dismissed.