Juror 52 was one of 12 people who found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty in the murder of George Floyd. He said the “evidence was overwhelming” against Chauvin.
Mitchell, a high school basketball coach, said he and the other 11 jurors who deliberated were not aware of the demonstrations or news reporting during the high-profile trial.
Throughout the trial, “watching somebody die on a daily basis, so that stress alone is enough to take your mind away from whatever's going on outside of the four walls of the courtroom,” he told ABC.
Floyd died May 25, 2020 while in police custody in Minneapolis. Officers had been called to a store to investigate an alleged counterfeit bill when they encountered Floyd.
Widely-shared video of the arrest showed Chauvin with his knee on Floyd’s neck and back for nine minutes. Prosecutors argued this maneuver is what killed him.
The jury agreed and after about 10 hours of deliberations, found Chauvin guilty of second-degree manslaughter, and second-and-third-degree murder on April 20.
Mitchell said the video of Floyd’s arrest, taken by a young bystander who testified during the trial, “was probably the most important piece of evidence.”
The video sparked weeks of protests and demonstrations around the world calling for police reform and racial justice.
Mitchell told CBS the witness that stood out the most to him and the others on the jury was Dr. Martin Tobin.
"I think as a whole jury, I think Dr. Tobin was the biggest, the most influential witness out of everybody,” he said.
Tobin is a breathing expert and walked the jury through complex medical explanations of how the body breathes and the different parts of the throat and lungs.
Mitchell said the deliberations were orderly and that there was a consensus.
"I feel like the evidence was overwhelming," Mitchell told CNN. "But ... decisions like that, when you're deciding somebody else's life, will never be that easy."
Chauvin will be sentenced by Judge Peter Cahill in June.
Mitchell came forward on his own to speak about the trial. Judge Cahill ordered the names of the jurors to be withheld for six months because of the high-profile nature of the case.
Three other officers who were present at the time of Floyd’s arrest and death will face charges later this summer.