Judge open to delaying state trial for 3 ex-MPD officers charged in George Floyd's murder

Former Minneapolis police officers J. Alexander Kueng (left), Thomas Lane (center), and Tou Thao (right) have been charged in connection to George Floyd's death. (Hennepin County Jail)

Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill said he is open to delaying the state trial for the three former Minneapolis police officers charged in the murder of George Floyd.

The trial for Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao is currently scheduled for March 7, but with their federal trial starting next week, Cahill said he is open to moving the state trial to a date between March 14 and January 9, 2023, according to an order filed Wednesday.

Lane, Kueng and Thao are charged with two counts of aiding and abetting in Floyd’s May 2020 murder. All three are also facing federal charges for allegedly violating Floyd’s civil rights during his deadly arrest. Jury selection in that trial starts on Jan. 20.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys in the state case filed a joint motion last week to have the state trial postponed, saying it is unknown how long the federal trial would last.

Cahill granted the motion, ordering the parties to meet this week to hammer out a new trial date. If they fail to agree on a new date, the trial will begin as scheduled on March 7 unless the parties are unavailable because the federal trial is still going on. In that case, Cahill said he will continue to push out the trial date day by day until the federal trial has concluded.