RELATED STORY: Tuesday: Prosecutors Say Video Will Show 3 Cops Violated Floyd’s Rights
Hubbard Broadcasting’s sister station, 5 Eyewitness News, provides updates on what’s happening in the courtroom. Cameras are not permitted in the courtroom for this trial.
Jurors had only a brief morning break amid testimony from two witnesses on Wednesday morning.
Hennepin County Medical Center paramedic Derek Smith spent most of the morning on the witness stand, explaining his response to the scene on May 25, 2020.
Prosecutors focused on what little information Smith received before arriving at the scene and questioned whether it was unusual not to receive more information after his call was escalated to an emergency.
“Yes, in my opinion, I should be told why there is a change in status,” Smith said. He later added: “When I arrived at the scene, I had no information… for me, more information could have been provided.
Smith explained why, after quickly assessing Floyd’s condition at the scene, he chose to load him into the ambulance and drive a few blocks away. Smith testified he told his partner ‘I think he’s dead’ after checking Floyd’s pupils and pulse, then decided that due to the crowds it would be best to walk away a few blocks away.
While the defense pointed out that Smith said the crowd appeared hostile and “wasn’t safe,” which he confirmed, Smith pointed out to prosecutors that he always started helping right after Floyd had been loaded into the ambulance and while his partner drove a few blocks. a way.
Smith said he had minimal interactions with officers and that Lane was really the only one who explained what happened, although he didn’t specifically say that Chauvin had his knee on Lane’s neck. Floyd for more than nine minutes.
Lane’s attorney pointed to everything Lane did to help, including starting chest compressions on Floyd in the ambulance. Smith agreed Lane’s presence was good, saying, “In my opinion, he was helpful, yes.”
The defense also attempted to paint the picture that Floyd might have experienced excited delirium, which Smith says can be experienced by subjects who have used drugs or other substances and can briefly give them “superhuman strength.” but, if left untreated, can lead to cardiac arrest and death.
Smith listed some potential signs of excited delirium such as a subject sweating excessively, having trouble understanding and responding coherently, using vulgarities, “being in his own little world”, and agreed that foaming at the mouth could be a sign, but not necessarily. Prosecutors tried to push back against the story that Floyd may have experienced excited delirium and focused on what treatment officers and firefighters could have provided.
That line of questioning is expected to continue into the afternoon, as Minneapolis Fire Captain Jeremy Norton was called just before the lunch break and began explaining firefighter medical training.
Norton also noted that firefighters “can get most spots in our box in 3-4 minutes…and can keep someone alive (until paramedics arrive).”
The court is scheduled to meet at 1:30 p.m. with Norton back at the stand.
RELATED STORY: Opening Statements: Ongoing Trial for Cops Accused of Violating Floyd’s Rights
Before the jurors returned from lunch, Kueng’s attorney asked the judge to declare a mistrial, which Magnuson shot down before prosecutors even had a chance to object to the motion.
When the jurors returned, Norton continued his testimony by explaining his response to the scene on May 25, 2020. He noted, “We had no information from our dispatch at that time, even with the Code update. 3,” and said Thao even asked why the firefighters were there, saying they only needed medics. Norton then told Thao that he and his crew were EMS.
When he and his team finally learned that paramedics had taken Floyd a few blocks away in the ambulance, Norton said they got to the ambulance and replaced Lane inside so they could help the paramedics. However, Floyd never breathed or had a pulse while he was there, Norton said.
The fire captain also brushed off excited delirium when the defense questioned him about it, calling it a “catch-all phrase” used for people acting irrationally after being subdued. He added that there was no agreement on what excited delirium is, but said he believed it was caused by, among other things, being restrained.
Genevieve Hansen, a Minneapolis firefighter who was off duty the night of May 25, 2020, when she arrived at the scene, was the next witness jurors heard from.
She said it was “alarming” when she saw three officers on top of Floyd, and added: “His face looked really swollen and crushed to the ground, he wasn’t moving, he was definitely unconscious. .. I was immediately worried.”
Hansen explained how she approached officers, said she was a firefighter and asked for help, specifically to have Floyd’s pulse checked, but Thao told her to get on the sidewalk. She also testified that she knew it was an urgent situation and grew frustrated with the officers, yelling at them and trying to get them to check Floyd’s pulse.
She also said it was clear there was a miscommunication with dispatch because she saw the fire department arrive and they clearly didn’t know where the patient was or what had happened. . She called it unusual for firefighters to even go to a scene after paramedics have moved Floyd away from the scene, because firefighters usually arrive on the scene first.
“I’ve never been to a call that was in that order,” Hansen said.
Judge Magnuson requested an afternoon break at 3:20 p.m. Hansen’s testimony will continue after the break.