*Morries Lester Hall, a friend of George Floyd and a key witness in the trial of Derek Chauvin, is trying to avoid testifying as it could lead to him being charged with third-degree murder for Floyd’s death.
Hall, who is threatening to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, was in a car with Floyd on May 25, moments before Floyd was detained by Minneapolis police officers and pinned to the ground. Hall’s attorney has noted that anything his client says about his alleged drug activity with Floyd could incriminate him.
Hall, currently in jail on charges unrelated to Floyd’s death, appeared in court via Zoom on Tuesday in which his attorney argued he has no immunity from prosecution over testimony about he and Floyd’s activities on that fateful day, MSN reports.
Chauvin’s attorney, Eric Nelson, reportedly told the jury last week that Floyd obtained narcotics from Hall.
“This will include evidence that while they were in the car, Mr. Floyd consumed what were thought to be two Percoset [painkiller] pills,” Nelson said.
“Mr. Floyd’s friends will explain that Mr. Floyd fell asleep in the car and that they couldn’t wake him up to get going, that they thought the police might be coming because now the store [employees] were coming out,” Nelson said, referring to Hall and Shawanda Hill, Floyd’s former girlfriend, who were in the SUV with Floyd outside the Cup Foods prior to his deadly encounter with former officer Chauvin.
Hall’s lawyer, Adrienne Cousins, filed a motion to dismiss subpoenas from the prosecution and defense for her client to testify.
“Your honor, I cannot envision any topic that Mr. Hall would be called to testify on that would be both relevant to the case that would not incriminate him,” Cousins told Judge Peter Cahill during Tuesday’s hearing. “Mr. Hall’s testimony in these matters would specifically put him in the position of being in very close proximity to Mr. Floyd, in a vehicle where drugs were found during a search by police following Floyd’s death.”
According to the report, Nelson wants to question Hall about how Floyd obtained the counterfeit $20 bill that he attempted to use inside Cup Foods, and whether Hall provided him with drugs.
Judge Cahill has yet to decide whether to allow Hall to take the witness.