A witness’s exchanges with Chauvin’s lawyer Tuesday grew tense to the point that Cahill reprimanded her at the end of an emotional and sometimes tearful day of testimony.
“You will not argue with the court,” Cahill told Genevieve Hansen, an off-duty firefighter who testified Tuesday that she was deeply concerned by officers’ treatment of Floyd and wanted to intervene. “You’ll not argue with counsel. They have the right to ask questions. Your job is to answer.”
“I was finishing my answer,” Hansen said.
“I will determine when your answer is done,” the judge responded. He told Hansen to return Wednesday at 9:30 a.m.
Hansen, who cried during her testimony Tuesday, had cut into defense lawyer Nelson’s questioning at times.
When Nelson asked whether Hansen would describe the “demeanor” of others around her as “upset or angry,” Hansen gave a cutting response: “I don’t know if you’ve seen anybody be killed, but it’s upsetting.”
“Yes, I was just going to object, Your Honor,” Nelson said, telling Hansen, “I’m going to ask you to just answer my questions as I ask them to you.”
During his cross-examination, Nelson pointed to several inconsistencies between Hansen’s testimony Tuesday and her first statement given to the police after the incident, suggesting that the stress of the situation could have altered her memory.
For instance, she initially described Floyd as a “small and slim man” and recalled that Chauvin had his hand inside of his pocket while pinning Floyd down to the ground, he said. Hansen said Tuesday she later learned that was not true.