On Thursday night, Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer convicted in the murder of George Floyd, filed an appeal to overturn his conviction without an attorney.
In April, he was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death and was sentenced to 22.5 years. According to CBS News, Thursday was the last possible day to appeal his conviction.
In the filing, Chauvin says he has run out of money to pay for attorneys and is no longer being represented by the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis following his conviction. The judge who presided over Chauvin’s trial, Judge Peter Cahill, granted Chauvin “pauper status” last night, CBS reports, which means he’s exempt from having to pay court costs and filing fees.
According to Reuters, Chauvin claims he was denied representation by a public defender for his appeal. He also filed a separate motion to put the appeals process on hold until the court reviews that decision. For his appeal, Chauvin is raising 14 issues about his prosecution, Reuters reports. These issues include the court not allowing him to strike jurors that he believed were biased and also denying him a new trial for what he describes as “juror misconduct”.
Here’s a list of more issues Chauvin raised in his appeal, from CBS News:
• The court “abused its discretion” when denying the defense’s motion for a change of venue, sequestration of the jury for the entire trial, a continuance and a new trial.
• There was “prejudicial prosecutorial misconduct” committed by state prosecutors.
• The court’s decision to allow Morries Hall, who was with Floyd the night of his death, to not testify.
• The court’s decision to deny the presentation of “cumulative evidence with respect to use of force.”
• The court’s order for state prosecutors “to lead witnesses on direct examination.”
• The court’s alleged failure to make an official record of sidebar conferences throughout the trial.
CBS notes that Chauvin’s appeal also raises an issue with the court allowing the added third-degree murder charge.
The Root reported last week that Chauvin is also fighting another case in which he’s accused of violating the civil rights of a Black teenager. In 2017, he was caught on video, beating and kneeling on a then 14-year-old boy for 17 minutes. He pleaded not guilty.
And things won’t get much easier for Chauvin. He and three other officers on the scene of Floyd’s fatal arrest have a joint trial scheduled for next March, according to Reuters. All four officers pleaded not guilty to federal civil rights charges at an arraignment last week. The three other officers, J. Alexander Kueng, Tou Thao and Thomas Lane, also face state charges of aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter.