John Turscak, the inmate accused of stabbing Derek Chauvin, has reportedly decided to drop his legal representation. He now plans to serve as his own defense attorney in his forthcoming attempted murder trial.
According to RadarOnline, Turscak reportedly filed a motion in court indicating his intent to self-represent.
Derek Chauvin’s Alleged Attacker To Represent Himself In Attempted Murder Case
Turscak’s decision to dismiss his lawyers and choose to handle his defense personally would be a high-stakes gamble, considering the severity of his charges.
These charges include attempted murder, assault with intent to commit murder, assault with a dangerous weapon, and assault resulting in serious bodily injury.
As The Shade Room previously reported, Turscak allegedly assaulted Chauvin at the law library of the Federal Correctional Institution in Tucson, Arizona, on November 24.
The accused, according to court docs, used an “improvised knife” to stab his fellow inmate 22 times, resulting in serious bodily injury, per the Daily Mail.
If convicted of attempted murder, Turscak could face significant penalties under Arizona law.
“Mr. Turscak would like to appear in pro se and requests that a hearing be set on this request and motion as soon as possible,” the motion read, per Radar.
The former Mexican Mafia member, according to CBS News, is already serving out a 30-year sentence for crimes committed while simultaneously working as an FBI informant in Los Angeles.
Legal experts usually discourage defendants from exercising their right to self-representation in court due to the complexity of the justice system.
However, Turscak appears determined to exercise this right, which could potentially change the trajectory of the trial. He pleaded not guilty in court on January 5.
Derek Chauvin’s Family ‘Worry’ Over His Safety Following Stabbing Attack
His decision to represent himself comes just weeks after the hospital release of Chauvin, who gained national notoriety following the death of George Floyd in May 2020.
The hospital released the disgraced former Minneapolis police officer in early December, subsequently sending him back to prison.
Gregory M. Erickson, Chauvin’s attorney, suggested that even though they treated Chauvin’s physical wounds, the psychological implications of such an attack are likely to persist.
Erickson, shortly after his client’s release, stated that he had spoken to Chauvin’s family, who were grappling with concerns about his well-being and safety.
“His family is very concerned about the facility’s capacity to protect Derek from further harm. They remain unassured that any changes have been made to the faulty procedures that allowed Derek’s attack to occur in the first place,” he said, per NBC News. “Derek’s family did receive confirmation from Derek himself that the facts contained in the charging document are accurate; the attack was made in the law library, where the perpetrator attacked Derek from behind with an improvised knife.”
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