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2 jurors dismissed from Derek Chauvin’s trial over fears of impartiality after Floyd family settlement

New York Daily News logo New York Daily News 3/17/2021 Nelson Oliveira

The judge presiding over Derek Chauvin’s murder case dismissed two jurors Wednesday after they said the news of a civil settlement between the city of Minneapolis and George Floyd’s family affected their ability to remain impartial throughout the trial.

Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill had recalled seven of the nine jurors already seated on the panel to gauge their exposure to Friday’s announcement about the $27 million deal, a record-breaking amount that drew national headlines over the weekend — just days after jury selection started and about two weeks before opening arguments are set to begin.

The latest round of jury questioning, held via Zoom, came at the request of defense attorney Eric Nelson, who said he was “gravely concerned” about the “suspicious timing” of the announcement and its impact on the seven jurors seated last week.

One of the jurors who were excused for cause Wednesday admitted that the massive settlement “impacted me a lot.” The other said the dollar amount suggests the city may have felt that Chauvin was likely guilty.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minn. © Provided by New York Daily News Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minn.

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minn.

“It shocked me and kind of swayed me a little bit,” the now-former juror told the court.

The panel that will decide Chauvin’s fate now has seven jurors, with seven more needed for a full 12-person jury and two alternates.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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