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Police Chief Says Derek Chauvin Violated Minneapolis Policies On Use Of Force

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin's one-time colleagues are expected to testify in his trial on murder charges Monday, as the case over the killing of George Floyd enters its second week of testimony.

As the prosecution builds its case against Chauvin, it is expected to call Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo and two other officers on Monday — prompting a legal discussion at the start of Monday's proceedings over how much of the officers' opinions should be allowed in their testimony.

The prosecution has been calling a string of witnesses from the police department, including a senior officer who said on Friday that Chauvin's actions were "totally unnecessary."

On Friday, the officer with the most seniority on the Minneapolis Police Department said that he's never been trained to put his knee on someone's neck, noting that doing so could kill someone.

On Friday, the senior officer, Lt. Richard Zimmerman of the department's homicide unit, said that restraining Floyd in the way the officers did and for as long as they did was "uncalled for." He added, "I saw no reason why the officers felt they were in danger, if that's what they felt."

Zimmerman testified that putting someone in handcuffs brings the threat level "way down" – and he said anyone who is cuffed while facedown on the ground should be moved immediately.

Chauvin, 45, is facing three criminal charges, as listed in court documents:

  1. second-degree murder — unintentional — while committing a felony;

  1. third-degree murder — perpetrating eminently dangerous act and evincing depraved mind;

  1. second-degree manslaughter — culpable negligence creating unreasonable risk.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Corrected: April 4, 2021 at 11:00 PM CDT
A previous version of this story incorrectly referred to Derek Chauvin's defense attorney as George Floyd's defense attorney.
Bill Chappell is a writer and editor on the News Desk in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, D.C.
Laurel Wamsley is a reporter for NPR's News Desk. She reports breaking news for NPR's digital coverage, newscasts, and news magazines, as well as occasional features. She was also the lead reporter for NPR's coverage of the 2019 Women's World Cup in France.