Comments that Rep. Maxine Waters made shortly before a Minneapolis jury convicted Derek Chauvin of murdering George Floyd may help the former police officer in an appeal.
Waters, speaking to reporters over the weekend, said that protesters should “stay on the street” and “get more confrontational” if Chauvin were acquitted. The comments from the California Democrat provoked widespread controversy at the time, as well as a rebuke from Peter Cahill, the judge in the case.
“I’ll give you that Congresswoman Waters may have given you something on appeal that may result in this whole trial being overturned,” Cahill on Monday told Eric Nelson, one of Chauvin’s defense attorneys.
The defense on Monday submitted a motion for a mistrial, citing Waters’s comments as potential jury intimidation. President Joe Biden that same day said he was “praying that verdict is the right verdict,” a remark that also drew criticism from many people watching the trial.