Alan Dershowitz: Chauvin verdict should be vacated over juror lie

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Harvard Law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz, a famed legal scholar who’s been involved in the cases of everybody from O.J. Simpson to former President Donald Trump, believes former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin’s convictions should and will be vacated.

Speaking on Fox News’ “Hannity” this Tuesday, Dershowitz said that, coupled with all the threats of violence that were made during the trial, the bombshell findings this week about one of Chauvin’s “jurors” make it clear that the entire trial was illegitimate.

“This was not a juror. This was an advocate, and if it had not been an anonymous jury, probably people would have disclosed the fact that this is a juror who had a point of view before he heard a single bit of evidence,” he said.

The bombshell findings from this week are that juror #52, Brandon Mitchell, is a Black Lives Matter activist who’d been spouting BLM rhetoric and attending George Floyd “protests” long before he was even picked to be on Chauvin’s jury.

Yet when asked on a questionnaire during the jury-picking process whether he’d ever attended a George Floyd protest, he’d reportedly written “no.”

“And when you combine that with the threats to the jurors, why do you think this juror came out now and publicized himself? Because he voted to convict. If he had dared to vote for acquittal, he’d never have disclosed himself because he knows he’d be attacked. That’s not the way the jury system should operate in America,” Dershowitz added.

Listen:

(Video: Fox News)

Fox News contributor Leo Terrell, a former registered Democrat (one of many), agreed with this assessment.

“I think the key here is this: The defendant has definitely earned the right to have an evidentiary hearing to see if he [the juror] did lie. I think it guarantees a reversal,” he said.

“And more importantly, the Maxine Waters, the Ben Crumps, the Al Sharptons who were trying to influence the jury pool, this might just be one of several other jurors who may have been influenced by the activities outside the courtroom,” he added.

Dershowitz and Terrell’s assessments prompted host Sean Hannity to ask whether America could conceivably even handle another Chauvin trial.

“Does the country have to go through all this again, or would the prosecutors likely try and make a deal with the defense?” he asked.

Dershowitz replied that America would basically have to suck it up.

“They’re going to have to go through it again, because we have the trial of the three other co-defendants, we have the trial nearby of Kim Potter,” he said.

He added though that this time around, the juries must be sequestered.

“We’re going to see many of these trials with threats to jurors. That’s why we have to have sequestered jurors in all of these cases. That’s why the Supreme Court should take this case and lay down an unqualified rule, sequestered jurors,” he said.

This way, he continued, “Maxine Waters doesn’t get into the jury room even though she’s not selected as a juror.”

After the jury began deliberating in the Chauvin case, the Democrat congresswoman showed up at a tangentially related protest near Minneapolis and told the crowd that if they don’t get what they want in the Chauvin case — guilty verdict on all counts — they should “get more confrontational” and “make sure that they know that we mean business.”

As far as Dershowitz is concerned, what Waters did was equivalent to her being in “that jury room telling those jurors if they vote to acquit or less than murder, there is gonna be hell to pay and it will affect their own neighborhoods, their own businesses and their own friends.”

Indeed, even the judge who presided over the case, Peter Cahill, seemingly felt that way.

“I wish elected officials would stop talking about this case, especially in a manner that is disrespectful to the rule of law and to the judicial branch and our function. I think if they want to give their opinions, they should do so in a respectful and in a manner that is consistent with their oath to the Constitution, to respect a coequal branch of government,” the judge said during an April 19th hearing.

She didn’t care, though. If anything, the Democrat lawmaker doubled down by going after him.

While it remains unclear whether Chauvin’s convictions will be vacated, the former cop’s attorney, Eric Nelson, has taken the first step toward making this a reality.

“Attorney Eric Nelson has filed a motion for a new trial for former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who was convicted of murdering George Floyd last month,” Minneapolis station WCCO confirmed Wednesday.

According to Nelson, Chauvin’s constitutional rights were violated by the court by not allowing the trial to move outside of Hennepin County, and not having the jury sequestered, while also accusing the jury of misconduct. The attorney is requesting a hearing to throw out the verdict, according to WCCO.

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Vivek Saxena

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