Judge delays trial of two former cops in George Floyd killing until 2023

Two of the officers involved in the killing of George Floyd won’t go to trial until next year (Pictures: AP/Getty)

The trial for the two former Minneapolis police officers charged in George Floyd’s death has been delayed until next year by a judge, who claimed a recent plea deal taken by a third officer involved could create the ‘reasonable likelihood of an unfair trial.’

Tou Thao and J Alexander Kueng were due to go on trial next week on charges of aiding and abetting both second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the 2020 murder of Floyd, a 46-year-old black man Ki**ed by their former colleague Derek Chauvin.

Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill ordered that their trial will be delayed until January 5, 2023, arguing that additional time would improve prospects for a fair trial.

Cahill denied a defense motion for a change of venue due to the extensive pretrial publicity surrounding the case, but did say that recent publicity from a plea deal struck by a third defendant, Thomas Lane, could create an unfair trial if it were to begin as planned on June 13.

He also said that the convictions in February of Lane, Thao and Kueng on federal civil rights charges could make it difficult to seat an impartial jury.

‘These two recent events and the publicity surrounding them are significant in [that] it could make it more difficult for jurors to presume Thao, 35, and Kueng, 28, innocent of the state charges,’ Cahill wrote in his ruling.

Pushing the trial back should ‘diminish the impact of this publicity on the defendants’ right and ability to receive a fair trial from an impartial and unbiased jury,’ according to the judge.

Cahill also presided over last year’s trial of former officer Derek Chauvin, who was sentenced to 22 1/2-year kneeling on Floyd’s neck for 9 1/2 minutes as he said he couldn’t breathe. Floyd’s killing led to a national reckoning on racial injustice and protests across the globe.



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