September 22, 2021

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DC Police to activate full department ahead of verdict in Derek Chauvin trial –

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The department is requiring all officers to work 12-hour shifts and canceling time off ahead of possible protests.

WASHINGTON — DC Police will initiate a full department activation next week in anticipation of possible protests in response to a verdict in the Derek Chauvin murder trial.

Chauvin is the former Minneapolis police officer currently standing trial for the death of George Floyd in May 2020. Floyd’s death after Chauvin knelt on his neck for more than 9 minutes prompted nationwide protests and drew thousands to “Black Lives Matter” events in the District.

Protests in June drew what was seen as a heavy-handed response from the federal government, including the mobilization of unmarked Bureau of Prisons riot officers and the use of a National Guard helicopter to attempt to disperse crowds.

In an internal MPD email obtained by WUSA9, the department informed officers that, beginning the morning of April 19, MPD would be “fully activated to support expected First Amendment demonstrations.”

“All members should be prepared to work extended tours as necessary,” the message read.

To accomplish that, the department said all leave and optional sick days were canceled, and all sworn members of the department will be beginning a 12-hour schedule effective Monday.

After weeks of testimony, Chauvin’s defense rested its case on Thursday with the former officer invoking his Fifth Amendment rights and declining to testify. Closing arguments are set to begin on Monday, after which the jury will enter deliberations until a verdict is reached.

Chauvin faces three charges of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death. If convicted, he could face up to 40 years in prison.

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