Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao, the four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of Floyd, are set to go on trial in March. According to court documents, the state said that it “does not consent to audio or video coverage of any trials in these matters.” They did not provide a reason for their request.
Under current Minnesota court laws, a judge can allow visual and audio recordings of a trial if both sides agree. Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill has not yet ruled on the matter. Last month, Judge Cahill ruled that cameras would not be allowed in the pretrial proceedings.
Attorney General Keith Ellison said that at that time allowing cameras in the court room would “create more problems than it would solve” by changing the way evidence would be presented and possibly intimidating witnesses from cooperating and testifying.
The attorneys representing the former officers said they are open to visual and audio recordings of the trial. They believe that it would ensure their clients receive a fair trial — especially during COVID-19.
Earlier this month, the lawyer for former officer Lane filed for the charges against his client to be dismissed based on lack of probable cause. Attorney Earl Gray also filed transcripts from bodycam footage taken by his client’s camera and the camera of his partner.
Additionally, he filed a transcript of Lane’s interview with state investigators. Gray says that his client asked twice if the officers should turn Floyd over on his side and Chauvin, the cop who had his knee planted on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes, said no.
Lane is currently charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter. Kueng and Tou Thao also face the same charges.