April 20, 2021

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Day 4 of the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin included testimony from Courteney Ross, who dated George Floyd for nearly three years before his death, and several paramedics who were dispatched to the scene of Floyd’s arrest.

Ross recalled meeting and dating Floyd, and also detailed their shared struggle with opioid addictions, saying they had tried to quit many times but she feared he had relapsed in the weeks before he died in May 2020. “Tens of thousands of Americans struggle with self-medication and opioid abuse and are treated with dignity, respect and support, not brutality,” said the prosecution.

One paramedic testified he believed Floyd to be dead upon his arrival at the scene, while another recalled “I had to take the handcuffs off” of Floyd to “begin my resuscitation efforts.” Chauvin’s lawyer argued Chauvin attempted to follow police protocol and turn Floyd onto his side while he was being restrained.

Chauvin is charged with unintentional second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and manslaughter after he pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes. Read more at The Washington Post and The New York Times. The Week Staff

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