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We got a new look inside the investigation into George Floyd's death Wednesday, reports Jennifer Mayerle (2:57). WCCO 4 News At 10 - April 7, 2021
AMELIA SANTANIELLO: Today, we got a new look inside the investigation into George Floyd's death.
FRANK VASCELLARO: Several investigators took the witness stand during the trial of Derek Chauvin. They addressed key pieces of evidence they collected the night Floyd died and what they discovered months later. WCCO's Jennifer Mayerle has a look at today's testimony.
JENNIFER MAYERLE: This is the first time we're seeing the inside of the SUV George Floyd was in when officers first approached on that fateful day last May. Counterfeit $20 bills that had been tucked between the center console and passenger seat. And we learned about drugs BCA agents saw but didn't test, until a second search of the vehicle at the request of the defense.
MCKENZIE ANDERSON: At the time, I didn't give it any forensic significance. The focus of it was processing the blood in the back seat.
JENNIFER MAYERLE: The BCA forensic scientist testified the blood matched George Floyd's, and after the later search, Floyd's saliva was found on one of the pills. An outside forensic chemist said three of the pills contained small amounts of fentanyl and methamphetamine.
- The fentanyl concentration was less than 1%.
JENNIFER MAYERLE: A key part of the day focused on with Floyd may have said about drugs while he was on the ground behind the squad. During a cross-examination of a BCA agent, James Reyerson relayed what he heard.
GEORGE FLOYD: I ate too many drugs.
ERIC NELSON: Did you hear that?
JAMES REYERSON: Yes, I did.
ERIC NELSON: Did it appear that Mr. Floyd said, "I ate too many drugs?"
JAMES REYERSON: Yes, it did.
JENNIFER MAYERLE: The prosecution came back with a longer clip, and the agent changed his testimony.
JAMES REYERSON: Yes, I believe Mr. Floyd was saying, "I ain't do no drugs."
JENNIFER MAYERLE: At the start of the day, the prosecution's paid use of force expert again testified the use of force was excessive.
JODY STIGER: My opinion was that no force should have been used once he was in that position.
JENNIFER MAYERLE: And the defense attempted to discredit the LAPD sergeant during his first time testifying in a murder trial.
ERIC NELSON: A person who's in handcuffs can continue to be a threat, agreed?
JODY STIGER: Yes.
ERIC NELSON: They can kick you?
JODY STIGER: Correct.
JENNIFER MAYERLE: Jennifer Mayerle, WCCO4 News.
AMELIA SANTANIELLO: Letters and calls are flooding in to the store where George Floyd spent some of his final moments.
- I just thought I would make a call to you to see if there was something we could do.
AMELIA SANTANIELLO: Most are messages of support for a former cashier at Cup Foods, who testified in court about the counterfeit $20 Floyd is accused of using there. The store owner says they have also received threats.
Still, employees and community members are inside paying close attention to the TV.
MAHMOUD ABUMAYYALEH: Everybody that comes in takes a look at the trial.
TRACIE COWERS: It's sad. It's so sad. And it's really sad to watch it in the raw.
AMELIA SANTANIELLO: The store's owner says the TV is set to the trial every day. One customer said that she can't look away, even though it hurts to watch.
Testimony continues tomorrow morning, and we will stream it live, along with expert analysis on CBSN Minnesota.