One of the key witnesses in the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd will not be testifying. Other than the officers themselves, the person with the greatest knowledge and observation of Floyd was his friend who was in the car with him, Morries Lester Hall. Hall, 42, has given public interviews but has declared that he will not testify in fear that he might incriminate himself. He was listed as a witness for both the prosecution and the defense. It is rare for someone who gave interviews to news organizations like CNN to refuse to testify in trial. Usually such witnesses decline to speak in any forum to maintain their silence.
Hall was with Floyd when he allegedly attempted to use a fake $20 bill at Cup Foods in Minneapolis. In the video shown at trial, Floyd appears high and the employee who flagged the fake bill also said on the stand that he appeared on drugs. The two men apparently were in the store previously and Hall may have tried to pass the fake money — raising the concern of self-incrimination.
The police also previously stated that Hall gave a false name to officers after Floyd’s death and then left Minneapolis. He was tracked down in Texas and arrested due to outstanding warrants for felony possession of a firearm, felony domestic assault, and felony drug possession. Floyd’s girlfriend also testified that the couple was addicted to drugs and that Hall would sell them drugs.
In a notice filed by Assistant Public Defender Adrienne Cousins, the court was informed that “Mr. Morries Lester Hall, through undersigned counsel, hereby provides notice to all parties in this matter that if called to testify he will invoke his fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination. Therefore, counsel for Mr. Hall respectfully moves this court to quash the subpoena … and release Mr. Hall from any obligations therein.”
Hall has given multiple interviews, including describing himself in a Times interview as a “key witness.” He insisted “I’m a key witness to the cops murdering George Floyd, and they want to know my side. Whatever I’ve been through, it’s all over with now. It’s not about me.”
In invoking the Fifth Amendment, it is about him and his desire to avoid self-incrimination. Many judges would be miffed about a witness who is actively engaging in public interviews about what he saw while refusing to do so under oath. However, Hall clearly has a constitutional right to refuse to testify.
It is doubtful that Hall’s public statements could be used as trial. Such press statements are admissible for cross examination or other specific purposes. Without the availability of cross examination, using public comments would be unthinkable to most judges and lawyers.
In my view, the refusal to testify is more of a blow to the defense than the prosecution. As a criminal defense attorney, I would have viewed Hall as witness who could open up areas of drug use, criminal conduct, and relevant history to advance the defense narrative. He would have likely done more harm than good for the prosecution in my view given his own conduct and history.
83 thoughts on “Key Witness In Chauvin Trial To Invoke The Fifth Amendment And Refuse To Testify”
(music to tune of Sam Stone)
George Floyd…came home…
To his gal to watch TV…
After serving in the hunt for LSD.
And the drugs are hat he ate…
Would break a roller skate…
And tamper down the heart of you and me.
Oh. The morphine eased the pain…
Like a thousand railroad trains…
He never felt the force of Chauvins knee.
Cause the drugs inside had killed his wimpy brain.
Attorney Andrew Branca has been live blogging the trial and both his remarks and the comments on his site are interesting.
In general those commenting do not see the state’s witnesses helping the prosecution case very much and, in some instances, the witnesses seem likely to benefit the defense. One of the medical people testified that it was common to see police sitting on or restraining subjects when they arrive and that it is common for people who have been unconscious to be combative when they first wake up. The fact that the medical people wanted to get Floyd away from the noisy crowd before focusing entirely on his care was important. The crowd and the hectoring, rookie firefighter did not seem to impress anyone favorably.
So far, without much in the way of law or facts to support the prosecution they seem to be relying on a lot of tears.
I saw something similar, but even more so, when George Zimmerman was on trial. The prosecution witnesses sounded more like defense witnesses than for the state. One time when I returned to viewing after running errands I thought, “What? Is the defense already presenting its case?” Nope. It was just another witness for the prosecution [defense].
So far it looks like acquittal if law and evidence are followed and, more likely, hung jury when mob fears are factored in.
Natch said that there was no evidence that Floyd was heavily involved in drugs. There is now.
Floyd trial – The paramedic, Bravender, who was one of those treating Floyd, testified that one of the officers joined them in the ambulance to help give chest compressions to try to save Floyd’s life.
Doesn’t sound like ‘racist cops’ were indifferent to him at all.
Bravender also said that one factor in moving the ambulance to a different location to work on Floyd was because of the agitated crowd. Crowd interference is apparently not unusual in Minneapolis.
I said early on here that the police may have been distracted and concerned about the noisy crowd. Looks like the medical team was as well.
So far no testimony about what caused Floyd’s death.
In a normal, civilized, society, to convict someone of unlawful homicide you have to provide proof beyond a reasonable doubt that that person’s actions caused the death of the deceased and that no reasonable alternative explanation for his death can be shown.
The state has a long way to go before they can even see that standard with a telescope, much less prove it.
All Lives Matter–even the lives of policemen.
NO DEATHS IN 237 INCIDENTS
“Minneapolis Police Used Neck Restraints 237 Times, Left 44 People Unconscious Since 2015, Records Show”
Minneapolis Police Department officers have used neck restraints to subdue at least 237 people since 2015, according to an NBC News report published on Monday.
The report, which analyzed Minneapolis police records dating back roughly five years, also found that officers’ use of the disarming restraint tactic caused subjects to lose consciousness in 44 of those instances.
The analysis was released as protests against police violence surged in dozens of United States cities and across the world. Rallies have taken place since early last week following the death of Minneapolis resident George Floyd during an encounter with police on May 25.
– Newsweek, 6/1/20
Here is a nice article asking the same questions about the Supreme Court that many others, including some here, have been asking:
“Cowards, Crooks, or Compromised”
The prosecution knows that his testimony will help the defense, which is exactly why he hasn’t been granted immunity. This is prosecutorial gamesmanship, not a search for truth.
What’s the odds convict or acquittal there will be shopping at Walmart for flat screens and washers?
Apparently the prosecution now wants to edit or withhold video favorable to the police in the Floyd arrest, including body cam video. The defense has asked the judge to allow it. We will see.
If I recall correctly the state withheld much of that video from the outset but some honest person in the system leaked it.
I have to wonder what other evidence the state might be hiding or massaging.
Young, the state decided on a political conviction from the start and has been dishonest ever since. Such dishonesty under those conditions seldom gets punished so I am willing to bet that the state is hiding and manipulating at least some of the evidence. IMO they have been pushed to stretch legal boundaries far into the illegal realm.
S. Meyer — I agree. I think he should be acquitted and see that more likely given how weak the case has been so far, but a hung jury and mistrial is a stronger possibility given the fears of some of the jurors. I don’t doubt that some people will try to get to the jurors at some point. Recall that when the grand jury declined to charge the police officer in the Michael Brown case there was a clamor for their identities to be revealed. It was frightening.
Curious where you’re seeing dishonesty on the state’s part?
EB: “Curious where you’re seeing dishonesty on the state’s part?”
The officers’ body cameras had views that were to some degree exculpatory. That makes them Brady material which the Supreme Court has said must be disclosed to the defense. The state held that material back despite the Supreme Court ruling and it became available when it was leaked.
I wonder how you would feel as a juror if you sat and watched largely amateur video and carefully pruned body cam video that tended to create or reinforce a false narrative only to later see fuller disclosure that presents everything in a completely different light? I wouldn’t be very pleased with the prosecution and I would take the rest of their evidence with many grains of salt. Perhaps you would be concerned as well.
Even now the state is trying to limit the amount of body cam video the jury can see while the defense is arguing that the jury should be able to see all of it.
Which side is being more forthcoming and honest to the jury do you think?
To me the key moments are when Floyd slides into unconsciousness, when rescue care was clearly warranted and clearly ignored by the police. Any angle of footage from any source at that point suffices for me.
EB– Good thing you and the Princess and Chelsea Handler aren’t on the jury. You would get lunch on the state and then vote to convict before opening statements are finished.
No, my thoughts have been formed mainly from the trial itself. Certainly affected previously by the fact the actual footage got out last summer of the incident, but I’m a really practical guy who doesn’t buy into the sort of partisanship you cite here. Way too boogeyman for me.
EB- I thought your question was about improper conduct on the part of the state–which I answered–and not about your ‘key moments” which are likely less interesting.
No, I was asking about what you answered. Thank you.
But also no, I don’t consider key moments as being less interesting. I see what you’re talking about as being much more important in cases where there isn’t direct visual evidence.
He has the right to remain silent. Otherwise they may charge him with giving Floyd a lethal pill.
My guess is that because he was picked up for active warrants in another state he was trying to sell his testimony to the prosecution. The prosecution probably didn’t bite, and instead offered up more charges because he was trying to bribe his way out of charges. The “drop all charges and I’ll tell you anything you want to hear. If he testifies he will be opened up on that, he had a role in counterfieting, and he likely would also open himself up to the raging racebaiting conspiracy mob, especially if it hurts the prosecutions case. This guy is an idiot and has zero good outs so keeping his mouth shut is the best he can do…for himself.
He gave interviews to CNN because they were friendly and not adversarial as a defense attorney would e in court. If anyoneneeds any more evidence regarding the bias of CNN and other news media, this should satisfy them.
Probably holding out for some payout and/or to write some “groundbreaking” or “insightful” book.
” [Hall] was tracked down in Texas and arrested due to outstanding warrants for felony possession of a firearm, felony domestic assault, and felony drug possession. … Hall has given multiple interviews, including describing himself in a Times interview as a “key witness.” He insisted “I’m a key witness to the cops murdering George Floyd, and they want to know my side. Whatever I’ve been through, it’s all over with now. It’s not about me.”
Sewage witnesses means sewage case for the prosecution. Hall looks like the proverbial eyewitness bishop on the street corner compared to the rogues gallery the prosecution wants a jury of law abiding citizens to believe. If they convict the cop, it sure won’t be about anything other than fear of the mob.
The gentleman is on both lists? Now he has nothing to say after public speaking? Not sure if it helps him or hurts him personally. He is either listening to his lawyer or has smartened up. Either way, I am not so sure we will hear form him. I wonder if the defense puts him up there so he can plead the fifth and then spin that into what is he hiding arguments. The fact the Mr. Floyd had drugs in his system and in large amounts is not up for debate. I am not so sure that the Prosecution offers immunity at this point, although if he is on their witness list, what benefit does he bring?
After what has transpired in the first days of the trial, going after Hall to establish drug use tendency is extraneous. The man in the white glasses, the kid from the store, the young woman bystander interacting with the cops, the MMA bystander, the firefighter — they’ve already made a devastating case against Chauvin. And the prosecution already pulled the sting by establishing Floyd was probably high in the store. Experts will no doubt establish what a true opiate overdose looks like — and it doesn’t look like what happened with George Floyd. Don’t believe me? Look it up. I pray you never have to witness it for yourself.
George Floyd died due to a cop kneeling on his neck for nine minutes. The absolute best Chauvin can hope for is that his actions are treated as manslaughter of the accidental sort. Because what he did in reality was torture a man to death.
As to people who love to do interviews/expose themselves to the press & social media but then back out on testifying or being interviewed under oath…, well, there’s a man named L’Orange who would have a thing or two to say about that particular tactic…
The pic the defense introduced shows the officer kneeling on Felon Floyd’s back and not his neck. Say goodbye to Hollywood, EB.
Mespo, I don’t think some know the basic anatomy of the neck and location of the carotid arteries.
Well they can see it for themselves then:
A couple things: you need more pics to establish a base line, that one shows one instant in time. It doesn’t show the mistake Chauvin made in not recognizing that you can pressure the carotid through the scapula and also the tendency when kneeling on a scapula to progressively slide toward direct pressure on the neck…
At best, even if Floyd presented as a true opiate overdose (which he didn’t) it shows a cop torturing a man supposedly in the midst of an overdose when what should’ve been happening was for rescue care to be administered.
Manslaughter, minimum (no matter the ‘blame the victim’ tactic you seem insistent on using.
“Manslaughter, minimum (no matter the ‘blame the victim’ tactic you seem insistent on using.”
Propensity for violence in an a battery situation is always relevant. Floyd’s got it. That’s not victim blaming since Floyd’s not a victim until proven to be one.
Well, at least you’re conceding reality now and backing off intentional murder. That’s growth! Bravo.
Take the resisting and a cop out of the situation and maybe manslaughter but with the amount of drugs in his system probably not guilty and a commendation for keeping a violent felon off the street. Only the threat of mob violence makes the case problematic for the jury.
Well, if you scrolled through every post of mine on this topic, you’d see that I sign off with “Manslaughter, minimum”. So there’s that. I haven’t moved off of anything. But I am enjoying how desperate you guys are to try to explain something so visibly obvious away with completely hallucinatory logic. So color me entertained
“Well, if you scrolled through every post of mine on this topic, you’d see that I sign off with “Manslaughter, minimum”. So there’s that. I haven’t moved off of anything. But I am enjoying how desperate you guys are to try to explain something so visibly obvious away with completely hallucinatory logic. So color me entertained
Just that you’re now at “manslaughter, maximum” so there’s some progress. As for coloring you, I don’t really see you as the object of The Winstons classic song (“Color Him Father” for you newbies), more The Floaters:
Coloring book version for Mespo:
I’m *not* where you’re trying, hamhandedly, to place me. Chauvin’s flawed tactics (including the pics you won’t cite of his knee squarely on Floyd’s neck) put him in manslaughter territory. His refusal to adapt into rescue care when it was so clearly warranted establishes intent that takes it past manslaughter into murder.
The point is that pictures showing the knee not in a life-threatening position substantiate the autopsy report of no airway compression sufficient to cause death, hence reasonable doubt on key elements of the case like cause of death and intent to kill or seriously injure. If you think one pic showing a knee on his throat will do it, let me talk to you about the “squirming” that happened there.
Knee position, one way or another, taken in isolation won’t cooperate with an autopsy report. Chauvin’s knee was clearly on Floyd’s scapula at one point, clearly on his neck at another point. The footage shows a more coordinated picture. Experts will no doubt explain that whether Floyd had as an official cause of death stopping of the heart, or suffocation, or a conglomeration of causes, they are all related to a suppressed airway. Signified by the repeated “I can’t breathe” statements of Floyd which were ongoing. Also we’re also not talking about his head being turned to one side…, this positioning raises the carotid very close to the surface, making it much more exposed and susceptible to pressure. And again, where things enterred extremely negligent territory was Chauvin being wildly unaware of when it was time to adapt to rescue care. These things are taught in basic CPR training. Chauvin pleading ignorant here will have no effect on a jury that have gut wrenchingly watched his death played over and over in front of them. The difference with this case is that it happened on camera — the normal Alfred E. Neuman abstraction techniques you’re arguing work often when there is no visual proof to balance against. That’s what makes this case different. The prosecutors should have no problem shredding the overdose canard since Floyd did not exhibit the progressive symptomology of true opiate overdose. He exhibited the symptomology of someone dying from oxygen deprivation. Yes, you can die of oxygen dep without technically suffocating. The person in total control of that set of circumstances was Chauvin. Since you’ve regularly tried to paint me as being political and/or stupid I suspect you won’t be able to hear what I’m saying here…, but Chauvin is in trouble. Rightfully so.
And we’ll give him a break on his batting average because, well, it’s not good. Lol!
“It doesn’t show the mistake Chauvin made in not recognizing that you can pressure the carotid through the scapula and also the tendency when kneeling on a scapula”
Bug, can you tell us how the carotid artery is impacted by the scapula? Just to extend the question a bit further, if such mechanics occurred due to whatever moves and issues you are relating to the scapula why didn’t that show up in the autopsy report?
The prosecution supposedly uses its best evidence. I am sure they will show more, but right now you have to deal with what exists. A man is innocent until proven guilty.
” it shows a cop torturing a man “
That is an example of hyper partisan rhetoric that is meaningless.
No it shows a cop kneeling on someone who is suffocating and suffering systemic shutdown. Coupled with lack of rescue care administered at precisely the moment where it was needed. As the prosecuter said: yes, you can believe your eyes on this.
Re the scapula >> shrug your shoulders and I think you’ll find it’s movable. Indeed movable enough to pressure the carotid at precisely the right angle. As can the acromian and clavicle.
Bug try doing so with the shoulders in the position demonstrated by the picture and the knee going flat across the back. I don’t think anatomically that would happen in such a position without damage to the area being demonstrated on autopsy.
The prosecutor or you have to show how that could happen based on the positions in the film. Then he would have to prove the hold was improperly used.
Stay on top of the trial and you’ll see it right before your eyes. Just like the film. One still photo neither proves, nor disproves, anything. It’s just one second in time. I’m watching the same evidence as you, just doing it with an eye that’s been trained and practiced with working with human bodies in several contexts. Stay tuned, the experts will no doubt delve into all of this — they’re starting to as we speak.
I’ve watched the available footage, listened to the witnesses that have testified. My opinion so far is that a man who was most likely high, passed a fake 20 dollar bill at the corner store and was approached by police as being violent when his actual behavior didn’t fit him into the violent category. Bad procedure progressed on the part of the police,, cruising right past the point where rescue care shoud’ve been administered. Procedurally, Chauvin’s refusal to shift into rescue care when it was clearly warranted should establish his being wrong not just on tactics but also in establishing ill intent.
I’m open to other evidence presented, but just from seeing what the defense is asking on cross exam I’d say that window is closing pretty quickly.
“One still photo neither proves, nor disproves, anything.”
Absolutely, Bug, but one has to wonder why that was the photo used. I respect your opinion but I don’t find an opinion without fact and proof as evidence of guilt. This trial has nothing to do with who Chauvin is or the color of Floyd. It has to do with the mundane police actions made necessary by those who do not follow the law and resist arrest. The hoopla surrounding this case is political. If the police procedures are wrong change the procedures. Many places were defunding police and we are seeing an increase in the murder rate and crime statistics. That certainly isn’t the way. We should be discussing appropriate police policy as color-blind individuals.
So far the most revealing things I have seen are the coroner and toxicology reports along with Floyd’s complaints before ever being put on the ground. The scariest thing I have seen is what appears to be mob justice. We can all second guess Chauvin’s actions in the last 3 minutes but making a decision of guilt before being able to cogently present a case is not the way I like to see things handled.
I’ve seen, military naval captains, doctors, ambulance attendees, fire fighters and other professionals that have to think on the spot make mistakes that cost lives. I have also seen how they can act very quickly skipping the bureaucratic way of thinking and acting in their own experienced professional manner. We are judging the case through the eyes of the bureaucrat who has days or months to think about a situation that lasted about 3 minutes. There are books written on the two different ways of action. Each is needed based on the position one holds.
Take note, the defense has to prove nothing. It is the prosecutor that has to prove his case beyond a reasonable doubt. So far up to yesterday he is not in a good position except for the fact of where the trial is being held.
Right wing scum bags to the universe: “Who you gonna believe? Me or your lying eyes?”
I’m hoping and praying for 2nd degree murder. I could almost justify 1st degree myself. 3rd degree seems like a slam dunk, “reckless disregard…” Chauvin and his gang of felons with badges, esp. Chauvin, was just a sadist on auto-pilot committing murder and expecting to get his overtime check same as always. To me Chauvin’s face just screams: “Yeah I’m killing this GD ___er and I hope you enjoy the show.”
Reminds me of, “Bomb ’em till they love it,” and “We had to burn the village to save it.” There are some really nice cops but too few and far between. Most of them are just plain inhuman scum like Chauvin and his gang.
If the police unions grew a brain (they won’t) they’d all combine immediately and release a uniform statement demanding the war on drugs cease immediately. How many hundreds of thousands of lives destroyed for American’s love for drugs? And it gets only worse.
Execute the dealers, I don’t care, but the last thing individual users need is a criminal charge.
While executing the dealers may be a little harsh, I’m in agreement with you.
Well for those of us who passed the NY State boards that wouldn’t include us.
“Well for those of us who passed the NY State boards that wouldn’t include us.”
I think you mean those smacked repeatedly about the head by the NY State boards. The knee is clearly over the middle trapezius muscle of the back and nowhere near the carotid or the trachea structures in the neck. But hey don’t believe your lying eyes. Doesn’t fit your narrative.
Again, one instant in time, Big Messy. One amongst 9 plus minutes of instants of time.
“9 plus minutes”…
Bug can you put into words what you are thinking in your head? How do those words provide evidence that Chauvin had intent to kill Floyd or didn’t follow the local police manual and that failure caused death?
I am glad you have learned the position of the knee was not over the carotid arteries.
By the way Bug, you owe me $50. The reason is ” 9 plus minutes of instants of time.”. That is a pretty meaningless reason, isn’t it?
No, as I’ve said repeatedly, i didn’t learn from one solitary still photo that Chauvin’s knee didn’t pressure Floyd’s neck. That’s your interpretation of my addressing a solitary moment of time, expressed in a still photograph.
Are you really going to doubt that nine plus minutes doesn’t consist of many instants in time that make up nine minutes? Wait, I’ve seen how you argue…, strike the question.
It is up to you to prove your case. No one doubts the 9 minutes and many like myself were initially horrified at the pictures shown. That the pictures were terribly disturbing is not the question. The question is if Chauvin broke the law or if he acted improperly based on the situation and the manual.
His tactics clearly proved he was wrong. His refusal to adapt into rescue care when it was clearly warranted established ill intent, even if by omission.. It is not up to me to prove the case, I’m not a wanna be prosecuter. Not to mention the case is being proved in Minnesota as we speak.
“His tactics clearly proved he was wrong.”
If we all had to live up to your standards a lot of professionals including doctors, firefighters, the military etc. would be in jail. We accept the fact that outcomes are not always what we want. If we don’t accept that then all these high risk people saving lives wouldn’t exist and you would have chaos.
Perfect is the enemy of good.
Look at those pics again, Big Mess. This time withiout the Fox goggles on.
Look at those pics again, Big Mess. This time withiout the Fox goggles on.
Yep the defense would always offer pics that hurt their case. Man your are dumb to go along with that blindness. Pic blows the manslaughter case out of the water.
Make sure you spell words correctly when you’re accusing someone of being dumb. The pic shows one instant in time and blows nothing out of the water. Post a film of the whole nine minutes. Not only that it presupposes there is one way, and one way only to pressure the carotid. On top of that, this case case is more tied a syndrome of suffocations that occur from extended submission pressure. Not only that, it is the text book example of how *not* to treat someone clearly in need of rescue care (for extended periods of time).
Are you really so dense as to buy this one isolated pic tells the entire story schtick, Big Messy???
Sorry, don’t have time to proof commentary to the rabble. They rarely merit it.
I’ll let that one go. Lol. As to the denseness, let’s just say I’m dubious.
“On top of that, this case case is more tied a syndrome of suffocations that occur from extended submission pressure. “
Bug, in summary of your thoughts, submission procedures can cause damage. Accepting that to be true, why don’t you provide us the legal analysis of this case and it’s evidence showing us relevance to the generality you have provided.
I’m not an attorney, nor am I talking about submission tactics in isolation. Instead I’m someone who watched someone slowly be killed by police on camera.
“Instead I’m someone who watched someone slowly be killed by police on camera.”
You couldn’t possibly know that without an autopsy. So quit telling us you know things when you don’t. One of those “I knows he guilty because it’s obvious” arguments. Intellectually appropriate for you, of course, but not for those with critical thinking skills.
Actually, since some autopsies prove inconclusive, your bulls**t statement is, well, clearly bulls&&t.
Bug, you watched someone die. That is what you saw. The rest is fantasy until proven.
As far as your later comment “some autopsies prove inconclusive”, they do. However, if a man is beaten over the head with a baseball bat and dies, an autopsy that doesn’t show anything might leave the report inconclusive even though his crazed drugged out buddy swears his head was beaten in. If however the toxicology report comes in showing a lethal level of Fentanyl in his blood, the cause of death will be Fentanyl overdose.
Here are a few pics Fox isn’t showing you, Mess.
The prosecution knows that his testimony will help the defense, which is exactly why they’re not offering him immunity.
This could be a duplicate of a previous reply. If so I am sorry. Problems with my phone this morning.
This refusal to testify will certainly hurt the defense. In opening statements Mr. Nelson alluded to the facts that the passenger who is now refusing to testify along with a female passenger would testify that Mr. Floyd possibly invested drugs prior to being removed from the car. Also that they tried numerous times to wake him up. Now opening statements are not evidence but one could assume that Mr. Nelson got this information from a law enforcement interview with the passengers after the incident.
Because he is listed as both a defense and prosecution witness it would be interesting to see if the state would grant him immunity. I don’t think there’s much of a chance for prosecution for passing a phony $ 20. And I am sure the defense would welcome an offer of immunity
According to Mr. Nelson’s opening statement this refusal to testify will certainly hurt the defense. This witness could possibly confirm that Mr Floyd ingested drugs prior to being removed from the car. And again according to opening statements this witness along with a female passenger tried to wake up a passed out Mr. Floyd numerous times. This could explain why Mr Floyd did not just drive away after being confronted by Cup foods employees twice .Now opening statements are not evidence but this leads me to believe that this was stated in previous witness statements to law enforcement.
If he would be helpful to the prosecution they would grant him immunity, which would take away his right to plead the fifth. I doubt they will do that. If there are witness statements to the effect that he saw Floyd take drugs in the car, are those admissible?
Since he refuses to testify, do his public interviews become “best evidence?”
Probably not too fond of cops.
Desire to protect himself and probable desire to not help the cops led him to the 5th.
A smart prosecutor could (and often has) cut a deal.
You wanna guess the jury’s reaction to this reluctant guy AFTER they hear about his deal?
The prosecutor makes no deal in this case because the witness would help the defense more than the prosecution.
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