The judge in the trial of Derek Chauvin denied the defense’s motion on Monday morning to sequester the jury. The request followed the death a 20-year-old Black man who was shot by a police officer during a traffic stop in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center on Sunday night, sending hundreds of people into the streets.
Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric J. Nelson, had argued that the jurors should be ordered to avoid all media and spend the rest of the trial sequestered, because he feared that further unrest in the area where the shooting took place might limit their ability to be fair jurors. The judge denied that and said the situation in the area, Brooklyn Center, was different because the unrest was not after a jury verdict, but it was in response to a separate police shooting.
The unrest will be at “forefront of the jury’s mind-set,” Mr. Nelson said. “A verdict in this case will have consequences. They have been exposed to that already. The jury should be sequestered.”
Mr. Nelson asked the court for two things: full sequestration of the jury, and to re-interview each juror about what they know about the protests and the police shooting on Sunday night. The judge, Peter A. Cahill, denied both. “This is a totally different case,” he said.
The protests in Brooklyn Center came hours before the start of the third week of Mr. Chauvin’s trial.