Closing arguments have been presented in the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. A suspect was arrested in the fatal shooting of three people in Austin, Texas. And every adult in the USA is eligible to schedule an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine.
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Both sides in the Chauvin trial deliver closing arguments
The prosecution and defense presented their closing arguments Monday in the murder trial of Derek Chauvin, a former police officer charged in the death of George Floyd. Prosecutor Steve Schleicher said Chauvin "chose pride over policing," calling his actions "unnecessary, gratuitous and disproportionate." Schleicher reminded jurors Chauvin had hundreds of hours of training over his 19 years with the Minneapolis Police Department and should've known how to handle someone in crisis. On the other end, the defense urged jurors to focus on "the totality of the circumstances" and consider more than the nine minutes and 29 seconds Chauvin's knee was on Floyd's neck. The defense returned to the argument that Floyd died because of the drugs in his system and underlying heart issues.
Path to this point in the trial: Monday's closing arguments marked the 14th day of the trial. Before that, the prosecution called 38 witness and played dozens of clips over an 11-day span. After the prosecution rested its case last week, the defense called seven witnesses over two days before resting Thursday.
What's next? After closing arguments, the jurors will deliberate and decide whether the government proved all of the elements of a given charge beyond a reasonable doubt.
How long will it take to reach a verdict? Although every trial is different, legal observers told USA TODAY that Minnesota juries typically have returned verdicts within a few days, particularly if they are sequestered.
Chauvin is charged with second-degree and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter in Floyd's death last May. If convicted of the most serious charge, Chauvin could face 12½ years in prison under sentencing guidelines for a first-time offender. The prosecution argued there are aggravating factors that require a longer prison term.
Two suspects arrested after shootings in Texas and Wisconsin
In Austin, Texas, police arrested a former sheriff's deputy suspected of killing three people in a shooting over the weekend. The suspect, Stephen Nicholas Broderick, 41, was arrested along a highway Monday after police received calls about a man walking along the road. Also Monday, the Elgin school district identified two of the victims as Alyssa Broderick, who left Elgin High School last year, and Willie Simmons, who was a senior there. Before the shooting, Broderick had been free on bail on charges of sexual assault of a child, and his wife filed for a protective order, saying she was "afraid he will try to hurt me or my children."
In Kenosha County, Wisconsin, the suspect in a shooting that left three people dead and two injured was arrested Sunday. Rakayo A. Vinson, 24, was brought into custody Sunday after a manhunt involving about 100 officers, the Kenosha County Sheriff's Department said. The shooting happened early Sunday at a tavern in Kenosha after the suspect "wasn't cooperating with management."
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You get a vaccine! You get a vaccine!
Your vaccine time has come, America: Every U.S. adult is eligible to schedule a COVID-19 vaccine starting today. New Jersey, Massachusetts and Oregon were among a handful of states making the vaccine available to every adult Monday, the deadline set by President Joe Biden. The White House has turned its attention to convincing Americans to get the jabs. "Please get the vaccine," Biden said in a video posted on Twitter. Still on the fence about receiving one? We talked to a panel of experts about the vaccines, and the message was clear: Vaccines are safe, effective and a triumph of science – essential for ending the pandemic and restoring the U.S. economy. The big challenge is getting enough people to take them.
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NASA makes history with first powered flight on another planet
That's one small step for NASA, another giant leap for mankind. The Mars Ingenuity helicopter made its first successful (and historic!) flight Monday – the first powered flight on another planet. The little helicopter that could rose nearly 10 feet, hovered for about 39 seconds and rotated 100 degrees toward the waiting Perseverance rover before landing, NASA said. After waiting for more than three hours to learn the flight was a success, NASA engineers responded with cheers and applause at the arrival of the first photo, a black-and-white image of Ingenuity's shadow as it hovered above the Martian surface.
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Supreme Court passes on challenges to gun ownership ban
The Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up three challenges to a federal ban on gun ownership for people convicted of nonviolent crimes, surprising Second Amendment advocates who hoped the court would chip away at the restriction. By not taking the appeals, the nation's highest court let stand a series of lower court rulings that prohibit people convicted of driving under the influence, making false statements on tax returns and selling counterfeit cassette tapes from owning a gun. The decisions are the latest in a series of instances in which the Supreme Court has skirted Second Amendment questions. But the court has signaled in recent years that it is interested in revisiting the issue.
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Derek Chauvin trial closing arguments, Kenosha and Austin shooting suspects arrested, NASA: It's Monday's news