Friday, May 14, 2021

SWC Re New Defense Motion In Chauvin Trial

I'm a bit bummed right now. First I lost a long post--probably something stupid that I did. I've done that before. Then the warning about being a "deceptive site".

So I'll just offer this link. Shipwreckedcrew gives a good explanation:

Was Expert Testimony in Chauvin Trial 'Coerced' and Then Offered by Prosecution Knowing the Expert Was Threatened?



The motion contends that after Dr. Baker’s preliminary findings were quoted in court documents, he received a telephone call from Dr. Roger Mitchell, the former Medical Examiner of Washington D.C.,

During this first conversation, Dr. Baker reaffirmed his conclusion from the observations during the autopsy that he did not believe the neck compression played any role in Floyd’s death.

After the call, Dr. Mitchell is said to have written an op-ed intended for publication in the Washington Post that was going to criticize Dr. Baker’s conclusions.  Dr. Mitchell called Dr. Baker a second time to advise Dr. Baker of his intention to have the piece published.  The motion filed by Thao’s attorney recounts part of that second conversation, and attributes to Dr. Mitchell the following comments:

[Y]ou don’t want to be the medical examiner who tells everyone they didn’t see what they saw. You don’t want to be the smartest person in the room and be wrong. Said there was a way to articulate the cause and manner of death that ensures you are telling the truth about what you are observing and via all of the investigation. Mitchell said neck compression has to be in the diagnosis.

The motion then notes that the final autopsy report has a reference to “neck compression” as having contributed to the cause of Floyd’s death, which was inconsistent with the Preliminary Report which triggered Dr. Mitchell to call.

Dr. Mitchell met with four prosecutors from the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office on November 5, 2020, according to a memorandum of interview prepared by the AG’s office.  What caused this meeting to take place is not set forth although it is plausible that Dr. Mitchell was under consideration to serve as a prosecution expert.

But Dr. Mitchell’s involvement with Dr. Baker took on a potentially more sinister angle because of his actions in the aftermath of the Chauvin trial with regard to Dr. David Fowler, the retired forensic pathologist who served as an expert witness for Chauvin’s defense team, and who testified that Floyd’s cause of death was “undetermined.”

In the aftermath of the trial, Dr. Mitchell sent a letter concerning Dr. Fowler and his testimony to four public officials:  US Attorney General Merrick Garland, Director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention Rochelle Wollensky, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh, and Director of the Maryland Department of Health Allison Taylor.  In the letter, Dr. Mitchell asked for investigations into Fowler’s medical licensing and past work as a forensic pathologist.  Less than 24 hours after the letter, the Maryland Attorney General’s Office initiated a review of all in-custody death reports produced while Dr. Fowler served as a Chief Medical Examiner in Maryland.

The defense doesn’t provide direct or explicit allegations of the inference it draws, but the allegation is that Dr. Mitchell coerced Dr. Baker to alter his final autopsy report by threatening him with professional reprisals if Dr. Baker did not include “neck compression” as a contributing factor to Floyd’s death.  Dr. Mitchell made it clear in his first call after Dr. Baker’s preliminary report ruled out traumatic asphyxiation as a cause of death that he disagreed with Dr. Baker — even though Dr. Mitchell was not involved in the autopsy and had no access to any of the autopsy materials.  The motion contends the contents of both conversations, and Dr. Mitchell threatening to publish an Op-Ed in the Washington Post critical of Dr. Baker amounted to “coercion” under the law, and that the defense should have been provided with evidence of the contacts between Dr. Baker and Dr. Mitchell given Dr. Mitchell’s connection to the prosecution evidenced by the November 5 meeting with four members of the prosecution team.



  1. Sickening. Add this to the Biden, Garland, and Waters statements and the Mpls dollar settlement prior to judgment being rendered, and the conditions we once believed applied to due process (for example the neutrality of publicly elected officials, the absence of jury and witness tampering, and the appropriate sequestration of juries) has been vitiated in this case. Are the President and Congress persons now and for all time exempt from jury and witness tampering? Are prosecutors now exempt from presenting tainted and/or coerced testimony? These are certainly characteristic conditions of totalitarian regimes but I had not thought them characteristic of ours, at least not prior to the Biden admin. Who will support due process at both the state and federal levels? Who watches the watchers?

    1. Pretty disturbing. Mitchell had no business whatsoever contacting Baker, and if phone records confirm this he could be in big trouble. And if the timing of phone calls between Mitchell and Baker and Mitchell and the prosecutors form a suggestive pattern, some stuff could hit the fan.

    2. More disturbing the perverted comment Nancy Pelosi made after Chauvin was convicted when she thanked Floyd "for sacrificing your life for justice."

    3. @dissonant1
      "Who watches the watchers?"

      The courts, then the appellate courts, then the supreme court...

      Then the people.

      Its actually pretty simple, although highly disturbing.

    4. ...something for John Roberts to think about...

    5. I would lay you very long odds that absolutely nothing will happen to Mitchell. Or Hunter B, or Hillary, or Comey....awww heck...the list is so long. But your continuing faith that this sham system punishes wrongdoers is touching, or wrongdoers with the correct political affiliation at any rate. Hey gulags! They're not so bad!

  2. Who was the pathologist who allegedly provided his services at no charge to the State and had never testified in criminal trial before the Chauvin trial?

  3. Would you expect anything different? This whole saga has been a set up from the get go. Now its the big pipeline hack, sorry can't help you, its a private business. It was never about money, and never had anything to do with Russian hacks. It was a inside government job, aka what ever letters you wish to use. Next thing is the Warning of Terrorist's attacks because your not having to wear mask, this only gets better. Looking forward to the Big Power outages coming in a few months in the Northwest. (white supremist under ground group) The play book is to easy to read. Then it should be time for the global warming fires and Hurricanes. Sprinkle in a few mass shootings and cops killing the minorities, and we should get some gun bans. And by that time it should be time for a NEW Strain of Covid story to cover up the adverse affect of the vaccines against the flu ect. Might be a good time to get into the graveyard business. You should be scared enough by then to do as they say with out question. Happy NEWYEAR 2022 !!!!

  4. Michael Baden inserted himself into the Chauvin trial. “Hired” by the Floyd family, along with a black female doctor, I seem to recall he never examned Floyd’s body. Nevertheless, he decided it had to have been homicide, and said this:

    Baden said Floyd was in good health before his death and said the video of his death showed the compression of his neck and back very clearly.

    We know that that is not true. For starters, Floyd was not in good health. Not in the time - months? years? - leading up to his death, nor in the time immediately before when he ingested all those heavy-duty drugs.

    The real Hennepin County medical examiner who did a real autopsy on Floyd’s body concluded otherwise. But Baden is the Ben Crump of medical pathologists. A celebrity pathologist.

    It sounds as though Officer Thao may have a better attorney than Officer Chauvin had.

    1. Wasn't Baden. The guy I'm thinking about was a retired examiner who had never testified as an expert before. I think he was trying to build a resume to get future work.