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CHAUVIN TRIAL: BCA investigators take stand as drug evidence becomes focus

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (FOX 47) — Thirty witnesses have now taken the stand in the Derek Chauvin Trial. Wednesday was the eighth day of witness testimony.

The first witness of the day, Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Jody Stiger, continued his testimony from Tuesday.

Stiger told the court that Chauvin’s weight was pushing down on Floyd the whole time Floyd was handcuffed on the ground.

Stiger believed Floyd was resisting when officers tried to put him in the squad car but said once Floyd slowed down his resistance, officers should have reduced force.

During cross-examination, the defense talked to Stiger about suspects sometimes bargaining with officers to get out of going to jail, and that some suspects will slow down their struggle with officers and then continue again.

“Almost to like catch their wind right and start fighting again,” said Eric Nelson, defense attorney.

Stiger said suspects could do that but officers must effectively evaluate the situation.

“In most cases, officers are trained that you can only go by what the suspect’s actions are at the time. You can’t say, ‘oh well I thought he or she was going to do this, so then I am going to do this force.’ It has to be based on their actions,” he said.

The defense also showed Stiger a clip from a body camera video where Nelson said Floyd told officers, “I ate too many drugs.”

Stiger told the court that he could not make out what Floyd was saying.

Witness #27, James Reyerson

James Reyerson

Special agent Reyerson works for the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. He is a part of the use of force investigation unit and was the case leader for the incident.

Reyerson was also asked about a body camera clip the defense believed Floyd announced his drug use.

Eric Nelson: “Did you hear that?”
James Reyerson: “Yes, I did.”
Eric Nelson: “Did it appear that Mr. Floyd said ‘I ate too many drugs?’”
James Reyerson: “Yes, it did.”

The prosecution also played Reyerson the clip but a longer version of it.

Matthew Frank: “Having heard it in context are you able to tell what Mr. Floyd is saying there?”

James Reyerson: “Yes, I believe Mr. Floyd was saying, ‘I aint do no drugs.”

Witness #28 McKenzie Anderson

Mckenzie Anderson

Anderson is a BCA forensic scientist. She analyzed the crime scene, the squad car and Floyd’s car. She told the court drugs were found in both vehicles.

She specifically referred to one drug sample she found in the squad car.

“From item 51, that the swab collected from that pill. I obtained a single source male DNA profile that matches George Floyd,” she said.

Witness #29 Breanha Giles

Breanha Giles

Giles is a BCA forensic scientist chemist. She also analyzed drugs found in the vehicles. She told the court methamphetamine, Fentanyl, oxycodone, were among the drugs found.

Witness #30 Susan Neith

Susan Neith

Neith is a Pennsylvania forensic chemist. She also analyzed the pills found. She said two of them had fentanyl concentrations similar to what is found in “street” samples to what she’s seen.

Testimony is set to resume Thursday morning at 9:15 a.m.

KaMaria Braye

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