Minnesota Appeals Court Rules Trial Judge Erred in Not Reinstating Chauvin’s Third-Degree Murder Charge

Derek Chauvin
by Scott McClallen


On Friday, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled Judge Peter Cahill erred when he didn’t reinstate the third-degree murder charge against Derek Chauvin.

The former Minneapolis police officer stands accused of killing George Floyd in May.

The Appeals court remanded the argument back to Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill.

Chauvin is already charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter.

He was initially charged with third-degree murder as well, but Cahill dismissed the charge last October.

“We reverse the order of the district court and remand for reconsideration of the state’s motion,” the Appeals court ruled. “On remand, the district court has discretion to consider any additional arguments Chauvin might raise in opposition to the state’s motion.”

Chauvin’s trial is scheduled to begin Monday with jury selection. It’s possible the trial could be delayed if Chauvin’s attorney Eric Nelson appeals this decision to the Minnesota Supreme Court. Nelson hasn’t yet responded to a request for comment.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison welcomed the news.

“We believe the Court of Appeals decided this matter correctly,” Ellison said in a statement. “We believe the charge of 3rd-degree murder, in addition to manslaughter and felony murder, reflects the gravity of the allegations against Mr. Chauvin. Adding this charge is an important step forward in the path toward justice. We look forward to presenting all charges to the jury in Hennepin County.”

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Scott McClallen is a staff writer covering Michigan and Minnesota for The Center Square. A graduate of Hillsdale College, his work has appeared on Forbes.com and FEE.org. Previously, he worked as a financial analyst at Pepsi.










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