Attorney General Keith Ellison to elevate charges against officer who knelt on George Floyd's neck; also charging other 3 involved

Correct decision by the Minnesota Attorney General to elevate the Third Degree Murder charge to Second Degree Murder and to charge the other three officers with aiding and abetting.Second Degree Murder.

Attorney General Keith Ellison has taken direct control of the case from the local District Attorney.

As I explained in the other thread, I believe the INTENT requirement for Second Degree Murder can be proved.

Note that Third Degree Murder and Manslaughter are still available as lesser included charges, should a jury decline to convict on Second Degree Murder.

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I was just about to post this in do you think Floyd was murder thread.

Second degree suggest he intended to kill Floyd.

Sounds fine as long as there isn’t the risk of them getting off, which is negated by the lesser offenses still being on the table of the jury don’t think they proved second. Last thing anyone needs is for this guy to walk out a free man.

I still think 2nd degree is going to be hard to prove. But if they stressed those 8 minutes they might pull it off. Floyd was snuffed out and that might prove intent.

Not a lawyer nor do I pretend to be one.

@TheDoctorIsIn @tislaw can comment more.

From what I understand under Minnesota law you don’t necessarily have to prove intent for a second degree felony murder.

I don’t even know what kind of a defense these reprehensible officers can even mount to justify what they did so I don’t see them getting off but I do hope they are convicted of the maximum penality allowed in the state of Minnesota.

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OK…but did you stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night?

Here are the five relevant Minnesota homicide statutes in full:

609.185 MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE.

(a) Whoever does any of the following is guilty of murder in the first degree and shall be sentenced to imprisonment for life:

(1) causes the death of a human being with premeditation and with intent to effect the death of the person or of another;

(2) causes the death of a human being while committing or attempting to commit criminal sexual conduct in the first or second degree with force or violence, either upon or affecting the person or another;

(3) causes the death of a human being with intent to effect the death of the person or another, while committing or attempting to commit burglary, aggravated robbery, kidnapping, arson in the first or second degree, a drive-by shooting, tampering with a witness in the first degree, escape from custody, or any felony violation of chapter 152 involving the unlawful sale of a controlled substance;

(4) causes the death of a peace officer, prosecuting attorney, judge, or a guard employed at a Minnesota state or local correctional facility, with intent to effect the death of that person or another, while the person is engaged in the performance of official duties;

(5) causes the death of a minor while committing child abuse, when the perpetrator has engaged in a past pattern of child abuse upon a child and the death occurs under circumstances manifesting an extreme indifference to human life;

(6) causes the death of a human being while committing domestic abuse, when the perpetrator has engaged in a past pattern of domestic abuse upon the victim or upon another family or household member and the death occurs under circumstances manifesting an extreme indifference to human life; or

(7) causes the death of a human being while committing, conspiring to commit, or attempting to commit a felony crime to further terrorism and the death occurs under circumstances manifesting an extreme indifference to human life.

(b) For the purposes of paragraph (a), clause (4), “prosecuting attorney” has the meaning given in section 609.221, subdivision 2, paragraph ©, clause (4).

© For the purposes of paragraph (a), clause (4), “judge” has the meaning given in section 609.221, subdivision 2, paragraph ©, clause (5).

(d) For purposes of paragraph (a), clause (5), “child abuse” means an act committed against a minor victim that constitutes a violation of the following laws of this state or any similar laws of the United States or any other state: section 609.221; 609.222; 609.223; 609.224; 609.2242; 609.342; 609.343; 609.344; 609.345; 609.377; 609.378; or 609.713.

(e) For purposes of paragraph (a), clause (6), “domestic abuse” means an act that:

(1) constitutes a violation of section 609.221, 609.222, 609.223, 609.224, 609.2242, 609.342, 609.343, 609.344, 609.345, 609.713, or any similar laws of the United States or any other state; and

(2) is committed against the victim who is a family or household member as defined in section 518B.01, subdivision 2, paragraph (b).

(f) For purposes of paragraph (a), clause (7), “further terrorism” has the meaning given in section 609.714, subdivision 1.

First Degree Murder is off the table. No way to prove premeditation and the other definitions are inapplicable.

609.19 MURDER IN THE SECOND DEGREE.

Subdivision 1.Intentional murder; drive-by shootings. Whoever does either of the following is guilty of murder in the second degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 40 years:

(1) causes the death of a human being with intent to effect the death of that person or another, but without premeditation; or

(2) causes the death of a human being while committing or attempting to commit a drive-by shooting in violation of section 609.66, subdivision 1e, under circumstances other than those described in section 609.185, paragraph (a), clause (3).

§Subd. 2.Unintentional murders. Whoever does either of the following is guilty of unintentional murder in the second degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 40 years:

(1) causes the death of a human being, without intent to effect the death of any person, while committing or attempting to commit a felony offense other than criminal sexual conduct in the first or second degree with force or violence or a drive-by shooting; or

(2) causes the death of a human being without intent to effect the death of any person, while intentionally inflicting or attempting to inflict bodily harm upon the victim, when the perpetrator is restrained under an order for protection and the victim is a person designated to receive protection under the order. As used in this clause, “order for protection” includes an order for protection issued under chapter 518B; a harassment restraining order issued under section 609.748; a court order setting conditions of pretrial release or conditions of a criminal sentence or juvenile court disposition; a restraining order issued in a marriage dissolution action; and any order issued by a court of another state or of the United States that is similar to any of these orders.

As I read the statute, there are TWO possible ways to get a Second Degree Murder convict. Method one requires proving intent. Method two would involve a scenario in which a separate felony, aggravated assault, would be proved, which, combined with the death of Floyd, would satisfy the requirement for unintentional murder. So that raises the odds on gaining a Second Degree Murder conviction substantially.

609.195 MURDER IN THE THIRD DEGREE.

(a) Whoever, without intent to effect the death of any person, causes the death of another by perpetrating an act eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life, is guilty of murder in the third degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 25 years.

(b) Whoever, without intent to cause death, proximately causes the death of a human being by, directly or indirectly, unlawfully selling, giving away, bartering, delivering, exchanging, distributing, or administering a controlled substance classified in Schedule I or II, is guilty of murder in the third degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 25 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $40,000, or both.

If Second Degree Murder was to fail before the jury, extremely high probability that Third Degree Murder would stand.

609.20 MANSLAUGHTER IN THE FIRST DEGREE.

Whoever does any of the following is guilty of manslaughter in the first degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 15 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $30,000, or both:

(1) intentionally causes the death of another person in the heat of passion provoked by such words or acts of another as would provoke a person of ordinary self-control under like circumstances, provided that the crying of a child does not constitute provocation;

(2) violates section 609.224 and causes the death of another or causes the death of another in committing or attempting to commit a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor offense with such force and violence that death of or great bodily harm to any person was reasonably foreseeable, and murder in the first or second degree was not committed thereby;

(3) intentionally causes the death of another person because the actor is coerced by threats made by someone other than the actor’s coconspirator and which cause the actor reasonably to believe that the act performed by the actor is the only means of preventing imminent death to the actor or another;

(4) proximately causes the death of another, without intent to cause death by, directly or indirectly, unlawfully selling, giving away, bartering, delivering, exchanging, distributing, or administering a controlled substance classified in Schedule III, IV, or V; or

(5) causes the death of another in committing or attempting to commit a violation of section 609.377 (malicious punishment of a child), and murder in the first, second, or third degree is not committed thereby.

As used in this section, a “person of ordinary self-control” does not include a person under the influence of intoxicants or a controlled substance.

First Degree Manslaughter does not really fit, as this was not a crime of passion.

609.205 MANSLAUGHTER IN THE SECOND DEGREE.

A person who causes the death of another by any of the following means is guilty of manslaughter in the second degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than ten years or to payment of a fine of not more than $20,000, or both:

(1) by the person’s culpable negligence whereby the person creates an unreasonable risk, and consciously takes chances of causing death or great bodily harm to another; or

(2) by shooting another with a firearm or other dangerous weapon as a result of negligently believing the other to be a deer or other animal; or

(3) by setting a spring gun, pit fall, deadfall, snare, or other like dangerous weapon or device; or

(4) by negligently or intentionally permitting any animal, known by the person to have vicious propensities or to have caused great or substantial bodily harm in the past, to run uncontrolled off the owner’s premises, or negligently failing to keep it properly confined; or

(5) by committing or attempting to commit a violation of section 609.378 (neglect or endangerment of a child), and murder in the first, second, or third degree is not committed thereby.

If proven by a preponderance of the evidence, it shall be an affirmative defense to criminal liability under clause (4) that the victim provoked the animal to cause the victim’s death.

Manslaughter in the Second Degree would definitely apply if Second and Third Degree Murder apply, but hopefully it won’t fall back to Manslaughter.

I don’t see my name in there.

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I’m extremely pleased to see both the upgrade and the others charged.

Now if everybody does their job, justice should be served. Unlike the cop in the Philando Castile case.

In the meantime, do we continue to protest?

  • Yes, continue to protest
  • No, wait and see

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I dont think this is going to end it feels like the its just the start

I voted yes providing it’s peaceful.

Now onto other news…how can you charge someone for murder when they died of CV-19?

Debating to start a thread on that one.

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Protest, not riot and loot like savages.

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And yet there seems to be “some” disagreement what Constitutions a protest. :wink:

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Good luck with that in the cesspool liberal big cities.

Again…I’m wondering how this is going to effect the case since George Floyd tested positive for CV-19.

And don’t think for one moment defense attorney might use that information.

They would have to somehow show the officer knew he was 19 positive at the time. Highly unlikely.

But I’m making a prediction. Anything less than a conviction on the highest charge possible for each of the officer, and they burn the cities down again.

Another bold prediction. You won’t hear any of the protesters calling for equal justice for anyone who killed the 6 police officers the last few days, nor calling for equal justice for the people responsible for looting stores and burning places day.

No…there seems to be total black out of their deaths.

Going to be interesting either way…in ow libs are going to spin this. Or cops attorneys.