As the George Floyd Murder Trial Begins, Here's What You Need to Know

The highly anticipated trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis officer charged in the death of George Floyd, is scheduled to begin with jury selection on Monday.

Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, died on May 25 last year after Chauvin, who is white, pressed his knee into Floyd's neck for more than eight minutes while he cried "I can't breathe" multiple times. Chauvin and other officers were arresting Floyd for allegedly using a counterfeit $20 bill at a corner store.

Widely circulated cellphone footage of the encounter sparked protests against police brutality and racial injustice in Minneapolis that quickly spread across the U.S. and beyond.

Floyd's killing became a rallying cry for the Black Lives Matter movement, fueling a summer of protests and sparking a national reckoning on race and policing.

Chauvin, 44, and three other officers involved in Floyd's death were fired, and later arrested.

Chauvin is charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter. Earlier this year, Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill ruled that Chauvin will be tried alone due to capacity issues.

The other three former officers involved in Floyd's death— Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Keung and Tou Thao—have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter. Their trial is scheduled to start at the end of August.

Cameras rolling

Cahill has allowed news cameras into Chauvin's trial, a rare sight in a Minneapolis courtroom, citing coronavirus restrictions that limit the number of people in the courtroom.

Viewers will be able to watch the proceedings on Court TV, which will stream the trial on its website as well as on cable television. The network can also be accessed free on streaming devices from Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, and Vizio smart TVs.

Court TV announced earlier this month that it "will be the only network with our own cameras in the courtroom and will provide live, gavel-to-gavel coverage" from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET.

That coverage will begin with the jury selection process starting Monday, and opening arguments are expected to begin no earlier than March 29.

But a possible delay could arise after the Minnesota Court of Appeals on Friday said Cahill should reconsider reinstating a third-degree murder charge against Chauvin.

The three-judge panel's ruling called for Cahill to follow the precedent set by the state's appeals court last month, when it affirmed the third-degree murder conviction in the case against former officer Mohamed Noor for his role in the 2017 fatal shooting of Justine Ruszczyk Damond.

Also last week, the House passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which would ban chokeholds and "qualified immunity" for police. It would also create national standards for policing.

"On behalf of George Floyd's family, we are deeply gratified and grateful for US House leadership," Ben Crump, a civil rights attorney representing the Floyd family, said on Twitter after the bill passed the House. "This represents a major step forward to reform the relationship between police officers and communities of color."

George Floyd protest
Kendra Waldeyer, 36, holds a placard with the image of George Floyd outside of Minnesota Governor's residence during the protest "Families Supporting Families Joins Mass Action 4 George Floyd Justice 4 All Nationwide Protest" in St.Paul, Minnesota, on March 6, 2021. Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images