Harvard law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz went on Newsmax on Tuesday to blast Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) for urging protesters in Minneapolis to “get more confrontational” last weekend, saying that she is trying to “influence” and “intimidate” the jury.
He went so far as to say that Waters is taking a page out of the Ku Klux Klan’s playbook to influence court cases by threatening violence.
“We’ve got to stay on the street and we’ve got to get more active, we’ve got to get more confrontational. We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business,” Waters said to protesters last weekend.
“First of all, the judge should have granted the motion for a mistrial based on the efforts of Congresswoman Waters to influence the jury,” Dershowitz declared. “Her message was clearly intended to get to the jury — ‘If you will acquit or if you find the charge less than murder, we will burn down your buildings. We will burn down your businesses. We will attack you. We will do what happened to the witness — blood on their door.’”
“This was an attempt to intimidate the jury,” he added. ‘It’s borrowed precisely from the Ku Klux Klan of the 1930s and 1920s when the Klan would march outside of courthouses and threatened all kinds of reprisals if the jury ever dared convict a white person or acquit a black person. And so, efforts to intimidate a jury should result in a mistrial with the judge, of course, wouldn’t grant a mistrial because then he’d be responsible for the riots that would ensue, even though it was Waters who was responsible.”
Dershowitz went on to predict that Chauvin’s case “will go to the Court of Appeals. And will the Court of Appeals have the courage to reverse this conviction on the ground … that the jury was subjected to intimidation tactics, not only by Waters but by others as well who threatened violence in the event of an acquittal or a lesser charge than murder.”