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The Lead with Jake Tapper
Second Day of Testimony in Derek Chauvin Trial. Aired 4-4:30p ET
Aired March 30, 2021 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: Welcome to THE LEAD. I'm Jake Tapper.
And we begin today with our national lead. We expect the trial to resume imminently in Minneapolis where the prosecution is laying out its gays against former Police Officer Derek Chauvin, calling witness after witness who watched George Floyd die last May as Chauvin kneeled on his neck for almost ten minutes.
One witness we heard from today is 17-year-old seen here on the right taking her young cousin to get a snack from a neighborhood store when they walked by the distressing scene. She recorded the video seen around the world of Floyd's final moments on Earth pleading for help, crying out for his mother, saying he could not breathe.
That witness testified today that Chauvin ignored pleas from the crowd to check for a pulse, from even an off-duty firefighter. She was not shown on camera today because she is a minor, but listen to how seeing Mr. Floyd die has affected her life.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
D.F., UNDERAGE WITNESS TO GEORGE FLOYD'S DEATH: There's been nights, I stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not -- not interacting in, not saving his life but like it's not what I should have done. It's what he should have done.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TAPPER: That witness' young cousin just 9 years old also took the stand and said ambulance workers had to push Officer Chauvin off of George Floyd when they arrived on the scene as CNN's Omar Jimenez reports.
JUDGE: Good morning, members of the jury.
OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The story of what happened on May 25th, 2020 in Minneapolis told today through the lens of eyewitnesses.
DONALD WILLIAMS, WITNESS IN DEREK CHAUVIN TRIAL: I believe I witnessed a murder.
JIMENEZ: Donald Williams was standing feet away from George Floyd as he was pinned under the knee of Derek Chauvin.
After Floyd seemingly unresponsive body was loaded into ambulance that day, Williams called the police on the police he had just witnessed, in particular Derek Chauvin. That 911 audio was played in court.
WILLIAMS: He pretty much just killed this guy that wasn't resisting arrest.
JIMENEZ: Williams didn't feel like he could talk to the officers at scene.
MATTHEW FRANK, PROSECUTING ATTORNEY: Did you believe that they were involved?
WILLIAMS: Yes, totally.
JIMENEZ: But the most contentious exchange of the trial so far --
ERIC NELSON, DEFENSE ATTORNEY FOR DEREK CHAUVIN: Did you say that?
WILLIAMS: Is that what you heard?
JIMENEZ: Was between Williams and Chauvin's attorney during cross- examination.
NELSON: You called him a tough guy?
WILLIAMS: I did.
NELSON: You called him a real man?
WILLIAMS: I did.
NELSON: You called him such a man.
WILLIAMS: I did.
NELSON: You called him bogus.
WILLIAMS: I did.
NELSON: You called him a bum at least 13 times. Those terms grew more and more angry, would you agree with that?
WILLIAMS: It grew more and more pleading for life.
JIMENEZ: The defense emphasizing a point it made during opening statements, that the perceived threat from a growing crowd caused Chauvin to direct his attention away from Floyd's care.
The next witnesses appear by audio only since they were under 18 at the time of Floyd's death, including a 9-year-old and her now 18-year- old cousin only identified as D.F. She's the one who filmed the now infamous cell phone video seen around the world.
D.F.: I see a man on the ground and I see a cop kneeling down on him.
JIMENEZ: She was asked to identify Derek Chauvin in court as the same officer she saw on the scene that day.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you able to tell the ladies and gentlemen of the jury if you know who this man is. You can take your time.
D.F.: Yes, yes.
JIMENEZ: She said she felt threatened by the police there, including Chauvin that day, a day she can't let go of even close to a year later.
D.F.: When I look at George Floyd, I look at -- I look at my dad. I look at my brothers. There's been nights I've stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not interacting, but it's like it's not what I should have done. It's what he should have done.
TAPPER: We lost Omar's shot there.
But let's discuss as we wait for the trial to pick back up any moment.
Joining us right now, Shan Wu and Van Jones.
Shan, let's start with you. The prosecution has called five witnesses today. They all watched George Floyd die last May. They were there in person. Two of them recorded what they saw.
Now they are witnesses to a crime so I understand them testifying, but they also filmed the crime. I mean, the jury saw this with their own eyes, too. So explain the prosecution's strategy.
SHAN WU, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: The prosecution is using a very compelling strategy. They are trying to put the jurors in the shoes of those eyewitnesses, trying to put them right there on that street to feel the same outrage, to feel the same helplessness that all of us felt and how those witnesses must have felt right there.
That's very strong evidence and it's so interesting in this time, there's so much video available from the cell phones. These aren't government surveillance cameras, it's not government evidence, it's evidence that came from citizens who watched it.
So that's a very compelling way to present this case and there's dangers, too, because it's very emotional and prosecutors will have to be careful that they don't end up being accused of appealing too much to emotion later on in the trial. TAPPER: And, Van, we heard from one witness when she was 17 when she
witnessed George Floyd die. She talked about how when she looks at pictures of George Floyd, she sees her dad, she sees her cousins, her uncles, and night after night, she stays up apologizing to him for not doing more when she saw him struggling on the street. Heart wrenching, really.
VAN JONES, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yeah, when you -- when you have a lynching which is what this was, you aren't just torturing the individual who you're strangling to death, you're torturing the whole community. That was the point of the lynching. It wasn't to lord power over one person, it wasn't just to torture one person to death. It was all the witnesses who were helpless to rescue their uncle, their child, their father from this horrific act.
And that's why this thing struck such a deep cord. It's not just the jurors who are being put in the position of being a witness. The whole world has been in that position for nearly a year. That video, that young woman is going to be tortured by this for the rest of her life, did a service to humanity and she suffered for it.
TAPPER: Let's go back to Minnesota where Judge Cahill is reconvening the trial. They just are swearing in a witness.
Genevieve Smith I believe is her name. Genevieve Hansen, Genevieve Hansen. Let's listen in.
FRANK: Is that is even a problem given that we're playing them before the witness testifies and she would be available for that questioning.
JUDGE PETER A. CAHILL, HENNEPIN COUNTY JUDGE: I don't say a confrontation issue, Mr. Nelson. Are you fine with that arrangement?
NELSON: So stipulated.
CAHILL: All right. Then those exhibits 24 and 25 are received and you may published.
FRANK: Thank you, Your Honor. At this time we will play exhibit 24.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WILLIAMS: You call what he's doing okay? You call what he's doing okay? You call what he's doing okay?
TOU THAO, POLICE OFFICER: Are you really a firefighter?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I am from Minneapolis.
THAO: OK, get back on the sidewalk.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Show me his pulse.
WILLIAMS: Check his pulse.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Check his right pocket (ph) now. THAO: Get back on the sidewalk.
WILLIAMS: The man ain't moved yet, bro. The man ain't moved yet, yet.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He's not moving.
WILLIAMS: Bro, you're a bum, bro. You're a bum.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Check his pulse right now and tell me what his pulse is right now. I swear to God.
WILLIAMS: Check his pulse. Bro, he has not moved, not one time, bro.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: For five minutes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He's not moving!
THAO: No, no, no.
WILLIAMS: OK, that's cool, go back to the store, bro, go back to the store. He's not fucking moving.
THAO: I see that.
WILLIAMS: I know your parents, I know everybody who owns a store, you don't need to help me to fuck out, bro. He's not fucking moving right now, bro.
WILLIAMS: He was just moving when I walked up here.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Does he have a pulse?
THAO: I'm busy trying to deal with you guys.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, does he have a pulse?
WILLIAMS: Bro, he's not fucking moving.
WILLIAMS: Bro, 1087, bro, you're a bum, bro. Or 987, bro, you're a bum. The first thing you want to do is grab your mace because you're scared, bro. Scared of fucking minorities.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What are you doing? He's like dying. What are you doing? He's dying!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why are you still on him? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He says he's not.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What is wrong with you?
WILLIAMS: He's not even fucking moving. Get off of his neck, bro.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're still on him.
WILLIAMS: Are you serious?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why are y'all still on him? He's not doing nothing to y'all.
WILLIAMS: You going to keep your knee on his neck, bro. You're a bitch, bro. Is that how you're going to keep let him like that, (INAUDIBLE) in front of you, bro? Huh. Huh. He's not even fucking moving right now, bro.
WILLIAMS: Bro, you going to sit there with your knee on his neck. You're a real man for that, bro.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Listen, I'm a first responder. The fact that you guys aren't checking his pulse and doing compressions if he needs that, you guys are on another level. Okay. I have your name tag, bitch.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't fucking care. I'm not on call.
WILLIAMS: Don't touch me. Don't touch me. Don't touch me.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Don't touch him. Don't touch him.
WILLIAMS: Don't touch me. Don't touch me, bro. Don't touch me, bro.
WILLIAMS: He's dead, bro. He's fucking dead bro.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You can't do that.
WILLIAMS: Thao, you know it's bogus, Thao. Thao, that's bogus, right, bro? Bro, you know it's bogus. (END VIDEO CLIP)
FRANK: And then, your honor, we would publish to the jury Exhibit 25.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: 203325 (ph), May 25, 2020.
DISPATCH: 911, what is your address and your emergency?
CALLER: Hello. I'm on the block of 38th and Chicago, and I literally watched police officers not take a pulse and not do anything to save a man, and I am a first responder myself, and I literally have it on video. I just happened to be on a walk, so I --
DISPATCH: Do you want to speak to a supervisor.
CALLER: I've been recording this.
I'm fucking recording this right now and I'm willing to talk to them. So, if I need to talk to a supervisor right now or someone need to contact me later on.
DISPATCH: Let me get you over to the supervisor, okay. Hang on one second.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: 203328, May 25, 202020.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
FRANK: Thank you, Your Honor. We would call Genevieve Hansen to the stand.
CAHILL: Please stand behind the chair.
GENEVIEVE HANSEN, WITNESS: Okay.
CAHILL: That's fine.
Raise your right hand.
Do you swear or affirm on the penalty of perjury that the truth that you're about to get will be the truth and nothing but the truth?
HANSEN: Yes, sir.
CAHILL: Have a seat.
I think we're able to hear you more clearly, if you were comfortable doing so, I ask that you remove your mask.
CAHILL: And let's begin by you giving your full name, spelling each of your names, please.
HANSEN: My name is Genevieve Hansen, G-E-N-E-V-I-E-VE. Last name Hansen, H-A-N-S-E-N.
CAHILL: Mr. Frank?
FRANK: Thank you, Your Honor.
Ms. Hansen, what's your current occupation and what do you do?
HANSEN: I'm a firefighter for Minneapolis City.
FRANK: That explains the uniform you're wearing today.
HANSEN: Correct, sir.
FRANK: And how long have you been a firefighter for the city of Minneapolis?
HANSEN: Just about two years now.
FRANK: And so not a question I often like to ask women, but how old are you?
FRANK: Okay, there's a reason that we ask you and the jury will figure that out later.
FRANK: So for about two years now, you've been a firefighter and can you describe for the jurors, you know, what you had to do to become a firefighter for the city of Minneapolis.
HANSEN: I -- there's a hiring process, and once you're hired, we go through an EMT training. I certified for the state and a national license. And then you go forward with a firefighter license. That's a four-month academy.
FRANK: And so tell us well even before starting as a firefighter, did you have to learn some first aid type?
HANSEN: Yeah, it wasn't necessarily done on the job, but I had gone through an EMT program already so I had gone through the course twice.
FRANK: Okay. So when did you first do the EMT program?
HANSEN: I think it was sometime in 2017.
FRANK: And so what was that program? How long was that?
HANSEN: It's called Pathways Academy, and it was a summer -- it was just the majority of the summer. I went to a fire station and did my course.
FRANK: And so that -- do you remember how long that was? Was that four months, did you say?
HANSEN: Maybe about that? It wasn't every day so it depends on what you do.
FRANK: And what kind of things did you do during your work at Pathways Academy?
HANSEN: We did a lot -- the Pathways Academy is longer than your typical EMT training because it really wants to give a chance to people to pass it. It's quite a difficult test. So we did a lot of hands-on training and book work.
FRANK: And so the book work, what kinds of books were you learning in that?
HANSEN: Probably more than you need to know about the anatomy and different bones and the way your heart works and then down to basic life-saving things that we need to know for -- for my job or if you wanted to move forward with paramedics. I could go on.
FRANK: So you have some classroom?
FRANK: And do you remember how long the classroom restriction was?
HANSEN: I do.
HANSEN: I think it was like an eight-hour day or something like that.
FRANK: And then you have some more hands-on training.
HANSEN: That was throughout the day, and we kind of -- and we had homework -- we need to do homework all night, or overnight all the time (ph).
FRANK: So how long was the Pathways Academy all together?
HANSEN: I think it was about three months or so. I can -- I can check.
FRANK: So then after the -- you have a day of classroom, is what do you spend the rest of the time doing?
FRANK: What's that?
HANSEN: Studying, yeah.
FRANK: And -- and so for them we --
HANSEN: We did quite a few ride-alongs as well with -- I did a couple of ride-alongs with paramedics and with fire. FRANK: So is this Pathways Academy affiliated with the fire
HANSEN: It's -- I believe it's through the city of Minneapolis. Just for trying to reach out to city youth within the city.
FRANK: So that's a way of helping you get a job as a firefighter?
And so then during that time, you're doing some ride-alongs, you're actually working with the fire department?
I actually had a cardiac arrest our first call and my first ride- along. That was quite the sight.
FRANK: And that was before you were even hired as a firefighter?
HANSEN: Before I was hired as a firefighter, before I was an EMT.
FRANK: And so then after Pathways Academy, did you have to take a test of some kind?
HANSEN: Yes, I got -- that's when I got my national registry test finished.
FRANK: Okay. And what -- describe for you -- excuse me, if you would, describe for the jury what that test is like, how long is it?
HANSEN: Yeah. You go through a hands-on portion and then a written portion just to demonstrate that you are prepared for any life safety -- life-saving that you might need to take or splinting or, you know, it kind of covers all that have and then the test is really scenario- based, like what -- what are the first things you need to look at? What are the most important things that you need to address to have the best outcome for the patient?
FRANK: So is it written or is it --
HANSEN: Oh, both.
HANSEN: Both. You mean the written part -- it's fill in the blank.
FRANK: And then -- right.
FRANK: So it's -- it's like written part, but is there also like showing that you know how to do certain procedures.
HANSEN: Right, that's what I was explaining before, hands-on portion.
FRANK: Right, hands-on, thank you. So when you say both, it's written test kind of end, as well hands-on.
HANSEN: Several days, yes.
FRANK: So you took that test at the end of the Pathway Academy's -- Pathways Academy program?
HANSEN: Yeah, and at the end of -- and in the middle of my academy for the fire department.
And so did you pass?
FRANK: And so then you obtained a certification?
FRANK: Is that yes?
HANSEN: Yes, sir.
FRANK: And what is the certification for? What does that mean you are?
HANSEN: I -- I can -- there's a range of things I can do. For -- our role a lot of times is to assist the medics or we get there before the medics and so we can, you know, start any basic wound bandaging or up, to you know, starting compressions for working CPR right away.
FRANK: Does it also involve assessing a patient and determining what is needed?
HANSEN: Correct. That's the first thing we would do.
FRANK: And then -- so you were certified as an EMT, and I guess just for the record what does EMT stand for?
HANSEN: Emergency medical technician.
FRANK: And you got a national certification for that?
HANSEN: Yes, and state.
FRANK: Is that separate testing? Or how does that work to get national and state?
HANSEN: Yeah, I believe it's separate testing and we have continuous hours of education that for -- for both.
FRANK: And so since your certification, you've had to continue taking classes to maintain the certification?
HANSEN: Yeah. The fire department does continuing education all year round.
FRANK: So then you -- when you finished Pathways Academy, had you already been hired by the fire department, or did that come after?
HANSEN: That came about a year after I started the process.
FRANK: And then once you got hired, is that what you obtained the state certification then?
HANSEN: I think I had both all along. Some -- the Pathways is why I have both.
FRANK: Okay. So as part of this certification you are able to do what we think of as CPR?
FRANK: And that's -- well, explain for the jurors what CPR is when I use that term.
HANSEN: So, if we find no pulse, we would -- I would ask for medical, you know, calling 911. I would want an AED on scene and I would start compressions. If I had my med bag, I would also be giving breaths, but if I didn't, just a rate of 100 compressions a minute.
FRANK: And so, CPR is the process of trying to resuscitate somebody if I'm --
HANSEN: Yeah. We're looking to regain a heart rhythm.
FRANK: And heart rhythm is another way of saying a pulse essentially?
FRANK: Okay. You can tell I've not been through the training that you have. Right?
HANSEN: It's all right.
FRANK: So, I just want to make sure you know that you know more about this than we do, so that's why I'm just trying to fill in these terms.
FRANK: So incidentally before pathways academy had you received some training in CPR before that even?
HANSEN: Yeah, I did a Red Cross baby-sitting.
FRANK: Work as a lifeguard ever?
HANSEN: Yes, I was a lifeguard, yeah.
FRANK: So you've got to know that kind of stuff then, too?
HANSEN: Yeah, yeah, I did that quite a few times in my youth.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's make sure we don't talk over each other. It makes it really hard to have a good record.
FRANK: Yeah, the court reporter has to take down everything that we're saying so each wait to answer.
FRANK: Wait for the question to be done. I'll try to be better about that, too.
So -- so when you start working for the fire department, explain, if you would, for the jury, when you go in for your shift, you know, not -- who are the core persons, not who they are, but how many people are at a fire department during a shift and how are they divided up?
HANSEN: Yeah, it depends on if you're a single house or a double house. Meaning, is there an engine there or an engine and a ladder.
And on the engine, we have three to four and on the truck, we arrived four. So maybe eight in house and if there's a chief there or not, we're all EMTs.
FRANK: And so as a firefighter, you mentioned earlier I think you received separate training on fighting fires? That makes sense, right?
HANSEN: Mm-hmm. They are different jobs
FRANK: So in your two years as a firefighter, have you gone to fires?
HANSEN: Yeah, quite a few with somebody as much time on it, I have.
FRANK: And have I had to enter buildings that are on fire.
HANSEN: Yes, sir.
FRANK: And provide recue for people who are in a billing that's on fire.
HANSEN: Yes, I pulled victims out of buildings.
FRANK: And when you do that as unit of four, or however many other firefighters are there, you all work together on those types of calls.
FRANK: When your -- well, in your work as a firefighter, you know, the title obviously makes us all think that you fight fires, but you do a lot more than that, correct?
HANSEN: Mm-hmm. FRANK: You have to say yes or no.
FRANK: The thing to remember is the court reporter has to take it all down.
HANSEN: Right, sorry. Yes. We -- we don't often get a fire. I would say, I mean, I've heard quite a people give like had a 90 percent medical for the calls and then that also depends on which station and which part of the city you're serving.
FRANK: So whatever the -- the majority number of your cases are medical.
HANSEN: Oh, yeah.
FRANK: Not fire.
FRANK: And on those medical calls that you've been on since you started working as a firefighter in Minneapolis, have there been times when you have had to provide resuscitation to someone who was pulseless?
HANSEN: Many times.
FRANK: Have there been times when you have been on a call and you have had to assess a patient's condition and what they might need?
HANSEN: Many times. Majority of the time, we arrive before the paramedics just based on how many fire stations there are in the city, and that's why we respond to medical calls so we can assist them and/or be there if they can't be there immediately.
FRANK: So incidentally you've talked about, you know, working at the fire station. Your shifts, is there a regular 9:00 to 5:00 job? How are your shifts done?
HANSEN: My -- personally, my shifts are 48 hours, so I'm -- there's also the option of working 24 hours at a time but I'm at the fire station for 48 hours and calls in the middle of the night?
FRANK: And then you get a weekend or something?
HANSEN: I have four days off after that.
FRANK: So, when -- in your experience, how many like times per shift would I say that you have a medical calling involving an unconscious or pulseless person?
HANSEN: It really depends on which station you're at. I'm at a particularly busy station, so it could be anywhere from, you know -- for pulseless, I'm in an area where there's a lot of overdosing. So, anywhere from one to five times in a 24-hour period.
FRANK: So dealing with a person who is -- does not have a pulse is fairly common?
HANSEN: Yeah. Correct.
FRANK: I want to draw your attention to may 25th of 2020. So at that point you had been working as a firefighter for over a little over a year?
FRANK: Is that yes?
HANSEN: Yes, sir.
FRANK: And were you in the area of Cup Foods at 38th and Chicago?
HANSEN: Yes, sir.
FRANK: And were you working that day?
FRANK: And, you know, without telling us where you live, you live in that area?
HANSEN: Mm-hmm. Yes, I'm in walking distance of that area.