One of the jurors who served on the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin reportedly sported a Black Lives Matter T-shirt with a reference to the death of George Floyd, seemingly challenging what the juror told the Chauvin defense team during jury selection.
According to a report from The Post Millennial, now-public juror Brandon Mitchell, 31, is seen in a Facebook post published in August 2020 wearing a hat that says “Black Lives Matter” and a T-shirt that says “BLM” with the words, “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks,” a reference to the death of Floyd.
The photo was posted by a Travis Mitchell with the caption, “The next Generation being socially active representing in DC my son Marzell, my nephew Brandon Rene Mitchell, and brotha Maurice Jauntiness Johnson.”
— Jack Posobiec (@JackPosobiec) May 2, 2021
However, when Mitchell was asked by Judge Peter Cahill on March 15, 2021, if he knew anything about the Chauvin/Floyd case, he said no, according to FOX 9 reporter Paul Blume.
“Judge Cahill asked Juror #52, whether he heard anything about the #GeorgeFloyd civil case,” Blume reported at the time. “He says, no. He explained hearing some basic info about trial dates, etc from the news in recent months, but nothing that would keep him from serving as impartial juror. #ChauvinTrial.”
Judge Cahill asked Juror #52, whether he heard anything about the #GeorgeFloyd civil case. He says, no. He explained hearing some basic info about trial dates, etc from the news in recent months, but nothing that would keep him from serving as impartial juror. #ChauvinTrial
— Paul Blume (@PaulBlume_FOX9) March 15, 2021
On April 20, after a little more than 10 hours of deliberation, the jury, including Mitchell, found Chauvin guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter related to Floyd’s death.
Chauvin and three other officers arrested and detained Floyd last May after he allegedly gave counterfeit money to a clerk at a convenience store. Following a struggle to get Floyd into the back of a police cruiser, viral video shows that Chauvin kneeled on Floyd’s neck and back for nearly nine minutes to detain Floyd while reportedly waiting for paramedics to arrive.
Last week, Mitchell told The Wall Street Journal that he came forward to talk about the case so he could “help push for change.” The jury was anonymous.
The Journal reported Thursday that Mitchell “said he decided to come forward because ‘staying anonymous wouldn’t help push for change'” and claimed he had been pulled over by police officers “dozens of times” in the past for “no reason,” suggesting his identity as a black male made him suspect.
“Mr. Mitchell said he was pulled over for no reason by Minneapolis police dozens of times in his early 20s, usually driving his mother’s aging Chrysler Sebring,” the paper reported. “He said he has always told his players to follow the checklist his mother gave him during these encounters. Take your hat off; announce what you’re doing; be polite; do what you’re told.”
“But serving on the jury has made him see how wrong it is that a person should be so afraid that a police officer could do them harm that they needed to change their behavior,” the Journal noted.
“That’s also part of the reason why I’m speaking up now because that is a narrative that is horrible,” Mitchell said. “So somebody follows directions or not, they don’t deserve to die. That’s completely ridiculous.”
H/t The Post Millennial