A judge has ruled that only one member of George Floyd’s family will be permitted in the courtroom during Derek Chauvin’s trial, which is slated to begin March 29.
Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill on Monday issued an order stating the number of spectators who will be allowed in the courtroom at one time. The order also specifies one member of George Floyd’s family and one member of Derek Chauvin’s family will be permitted in the courtroom at one time. “Different family members may rotate through that position, but only with the appropriate credentials,” according to the ruling.
Floyd’s family expressed disappointment over the judge’s order. “This has been a deeply painful and emotional year for every member of the Floyd family, many of whom intended to be in the courtroom to witness this trial, which is now expected to begin on March 29,” Benjamin Crump and Antonio Romanucci, attorneys for Floyd’s family, said in a statement. “While they understand the judge’s reasons to limit attendance in the courtroom, the family is understandably disappointed by this ruling.”
“The family is looking forward to the start of the trial as a critical milestone on the path to justice and a step toward closure in this dark chapter of their lives,” the statement continued.
Chauvin faces charges of second-degree murder and manslaughter after suffocating Floyd to death on May 25, 2020. Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds while Floyd screamed that he couldn’t breathe.
Due to the tension surrounding this trial, city officials are concerned that civil unrest could take place. The National Guard and hundreds of law enforcement officers are expected to be stationed across the city and at the courthouse where the trial is happening. Several roads leading to the courthouse have been closed, and authorities have placed barbed wire and concrete barriers around the building. Juror selection is expected to begin for Chauvin’s trial on Monday, March 8.