Derek Chauvin is on trial for George Floyd's death

By Melissa Macaya, Melissa Mahtani, Meg Wagner, Veronica Rocha and Fernando Alfonso III, CNN

Updated 0254 GMT (1054 HKT) April 2, 2021
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12:56 p.m. ET, April 1, 2021

Paramedic who responded to scene says he could tell from a distance that Floyd wasn't breathing

Pool
Pool

Paramedic Seth Zachary Bravinder, who provided medical assistance to George Floyd, testified that from a distance, he could tell Floyd wasn't breathing.

After arriving to the scene, he got out from the ambulance and headed to the back, and said "from what I could see where I was at I didn't — I didn't see any breathing or movement or anything like that."

Asked if Floyd appeared unresponsive, Bravinder said, "from what I could tell just standing from a distance, yes."

Bravinder said that he had his hands near Floyd's head to prevent it "from slamming down on the pavement" as they moved him unto a stretcher and into the ambulance.

The paramedic described Floyd's state and head when he was being transferred.

"I guess limp would be the best description. He wasn't — he was unresponsive and wasn't holding his head up or anything like that," Bravinder said. 

12:29 p.m. ET, April 1, 2021

A Minneapolis paramedic is now testifying

Pool
Pool

The trial has resumed after a 20 minute break.

The prosecution is now questioning Seth Zachary Bravinder, a paramedic in Minneapolis.

Courteney Ross, George Floyd's girlfriend, finished her testimony just before the break.

11:59 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

Floyd’s girlfriend said they both suffered from opioid addiction. Here's what to know about the US epidemic.

Experts say the United States is in the throes of an opioid epidemic.

It was already a national crisis but experts fear Covid-19 could be making things worse.

Walk-in clinics and syringe exchange programs have been closed. Community support groups are meeting virtually.

Some who struggle with substance abuse are homeless or incarcerated and can't comply with social distancing guidelines, while those who can are left isolated and at risk. On top of all that, the pandemic is causing massive stress — a primary driver of relapse.

Some facts about the opioid epidemic:

Common opioids include:

You can read more about the opioid crisis here.

If you or a loved one are suffering from an opioid addiction, here are some resources to how you can get help.

11:35 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

The court is on a break

Courteney Ross, George Floyd's girlfriend, finished her testimony and the court is in a 20 minute break.

The defense attorney, Eric Nelson, cross-examined her, and the prosecuting attorney then asked follow-up questions.

11:28 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

The prosecution's strategy in addressing Floyd's opioid addiction, according to a CNN legal analyst

From CNN's Aditi Sangal

As Courteney Batya Ross testified that she and George Floyd struggled with opioid addiction, CNN legal analyst Laura Coates explained the prosecution’s strategy behind addressing this fact — even though it may seem to cast Floyd in a negative light.

“It's because as the prosecutor, you want to present and address and resolve these bad facts. You don't want to have the defense be able to say, ‘Hey, jury, why didn't they tell you about this? Here are the things they don't want you to know.’ Sprinkling seeds of doubt,” Coates explained.

Coates added that the prosecution is addressing it so they can “package it essentially” to say, “‘So what? He has an opioid addiction.' And of course in America, we view opioid abuse very differently than we did even decades ago. How does this actually impact Chauvin's decision to act?” 

11:15 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

Trial is on a short pause

The trial is on a pause as the defense and prosecution are speaking to the judge.

The defense attorney, Eric Nelson, had been cross-examining Floyd's girlfriend. 

11:24 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

Floyd's girlfriend testifies he was hospitalized for an overdose in March 2020

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Pool

Courteney Ross, George Floyd's girlfriend, testified that in March 2020, Floyd was hospitalized for an overdose.

Responding to questions from defense attorney Eric Nelson, Ross said she picked Floyd up one night to take him to work, but he didn't feel well, so she took him to the hospital instead.

"I thought I was taking him to work. He wasn't feeling good. His stomach really hurt. He was doubled over in pain. Just wasn't feeling well, and he said he had to go to the hospital, so I took him straight to the hospital. We went to the ER, and they were checking him out in the ER, and it was getting late. And I had to go to work myself that Friday night," she said.

"You later learned that that was due to an overdose?" Nelson asked.

"Yes," Ross responded

Nelson then asked Ross if she learned what caused the overdose. She said she did not.

Here's how the rest of the exchange happened:

Nelson: "At that time frame, did you learn that Mr. Floyd was taking anything other than opioids?"
Ross: "No."
Nelson: "You did not know that he had taken heroin at that time?"
Ross: "No."

Prosecutors were the first to ask about opioid use during the trial to get ahead of some of the defense team's arguments. Defense attorneys plan to make the case that Floyd died of unrelated medical issues and drug use.

11:03 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

The defense is cross-examining Floyd's girlfriend 

The prosecuting team has finished questioning Courteney Ross, George Floyd's girlfriend. 

Defense attorney Eric Nelson is cross-examining her now in court. 

11:10 a.m. ET, April 1, 2021

George Floyd's girlfriend tells the couple's story

From CNN's Aditi Sangal

Pool
Pool

As the fourth day of the Derek Chauvin trial began, Courteney Ross took the stand as the first witness of the day. Ross said her relationship with George Floyd began in August 2017 and they were together until his death.

Ross said she met Floyd when she went to see her son’s father at the Salvation Army shelter. Floyd worked there as a security guard, and came up to her and offered to pray with her.

“I was upset and I started fussing in the corner of the lobby. And at one point, Floyd came to me. And Floyd had this great deep southern voice. Raspy. And he's like, ‘sis, you OK, sis?’ And I wasn't OK. I said, ‘no, I’m just waiting for my son's father. Sorry.’ He said, ‘well, can I pray with you?’ I was so tired. We had been through so much, my sons and I. And this kind person, just to come up to me and say can I pray with you, when I felt alone in this lobby. It was so sweet.”

After he found out she was not in a relationship, they shared a kiss in the lobby.

The prosecution is establishing Floyd's characteristic traits while questioning her.