Biden ‘praying’ for ‘right verdict’ in Chauvin trial: Evidence ‘overwhelming’
"I wouldn’t say that unless the jury was sequestered now, not hearing me say that,” the President remarked.
President Joe Biden shared his thoughts on the Derek Chauvin trial for the murder of George Floyd now that the jury has been sequestered.
POTUS made the remarks as he addressed the press on Tuesday. Biden revealed his hope for a specific verdict, however, he did not use the terms “guilty” or “not-guilty.”
“I’m praying the verdict is the right verdict,” Biden said. He continued, “Which is — I think it is overwhelming in my view.”
The president added, “I wouldn’t say that unless the jury was sequestered now, not hearing me say that.”
He also shared details on his phone call with Floyd’s younger brother, Philonise Floyd.
“I can only imagine the pressure and anxiety they’re feeling and so I waited until the jury was sequestered and I called,” Biden said. “They’re a good family and they’re calling for peace and tranquility, no matter what that verdict is.”
Philonise Floyd also spoke on the conversation. On Tuesday, he guested on NBC’s TODAY Show, as the trial against Chauvin closed and the jury moved to deliberate.
“He was just calling,” he said of the Monday call with the President. “He knows how it is to lose a family member, and he knows the process of what we’re going through. So he was just letting us know that he was praying for us, hoping that everything will come out to be OK.”
He continued by calling the trial a “pivotal point.”
During a press briefing on Monday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki shared the administration has been in touch with local authorities to ensure peaceful demonstrations, but did not want to get “ahead of the verdict.”
“We — what I can say is, broadly speaking, we are in touch with mayors, governors, local authorities. Of course, our objective is to ensure there is a space for peaceful protest; that, you know, we encour- — we continue to convey that while this country has gone through an extensive period — especially the Black community — of pain, trauma, and exhaustion, as we’ve watched these — not just the trial, but, of course, additional violence against their community over the past several weeks, we — it’s important to acknowledge that and elevate that at every opportunity we have,” she remarked.
She continued, “but, of course, we’ll let the verdict — the jury deliberate, and we’ll wait for the verdict to come out before we say more about our engagements.
theGrio reported the jury of six white people and six people who are Black or multiracial resumed deliberations Tuesday morning. Anonymous by order of the judge and sequestered now until they reach a verdict, they spent just a few hours on their task Monday after the day was mostly consumed by closing arguments in which prosecutors argued that Chauvin squeezed the life out of Floyd last May in a way that even a child knew was wrong.
The defense contended that the now-fired white officer acted reasonably and that the 46-year-old Floyd died of a heart condition and illegal drug use. Chauvin, 45, is charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, all of which require the jury to conclude that his actions were a “substantial causal factor” in Floyd’s death and that his use of force was unreasonable.
The most serious charge carries up to 40 years in prison.
This article contains additional reporting from theGrio’s Associated Press.
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