Mark Osler

In the News: Mark Osler on the Issue of Race in the Trials Related to George Floyd

Law professor Mark Osler commented for The Associated Press on why the trials related to the death of George Floyd have attempted to avoid the issue of race.

From the article: Mark Osler, a professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law, said many judges will try to keep “hot-button” topics from being discussed at trial in hopes of avoiding jury decisions that are based on emotion rather than the facts of a case, determining that race isn’t relevant to the charges. 

He pointed to the federal trial of officers involved in the beating of Rodney King in Los Angeles. Four white officers were charged with federal civil rights violations after they were acquitted by a jury in state court of beating the Black motorist. Their acquittals prompted violent race riots, but at their federal trial, race was not a focus, Osler said.