Prosecutors appeal judge's rejection of motion to reinstate Chauvin's 3rd-degree murder charge

Prosecutors filed an appeal Friday, asking the Minnesota Court of Appeals to review a Hennepin County District Court judge’s rejection of their motion to reinstate the third-degree murder charge against fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who is charged in the death of George Floyd. The filing was made public Tuesday.

Following the Minnesota Court of Appeals' 2-1 ruling upholding the third-degree murder conviction for former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor in a deadly 2017 shooting, the state asked the judge overseeing the George Floyd murder case, Peter Cahill, to reinstate the third-degree charge against Chauvin and add an aiding and abetting third-degree murder charge against each of the three other former officers charged in the case. Cahill denied their request, stating "nothing in the majority opinion in Noor persuades the Court otherwise," instead agreeing with analysis in the dissenting opinion in the Noor case.

"The District Court erred in preventing the state from amending its complaint to reinstate or add the third-degree murder charge against the four defendants," prosecutors wrote in their appeal.

Chauvin was initially charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, but Cahill dismissed the third-degree murder charge against Chauvin in October.

Chauvin remains charged with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Former officers Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane are all charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter. All four officers were fired the day after Floyd’s death. 

Chauvin's trial is scheduled to begin on March 8. Thao, Kueng and Lane will be tried together in August.