EXPLAINER: How Floyd’s ‘Spark of Life’ Played Out at Trial
Prosecutors trying a former Minneapolis police officer in George Floyd’s death put Floyd’s girlfriend on the witness stand in an effort to humanize him for the jury.
But the testimony of Courteney Ross also gave the defense an opportunity to delve into Floyd’s addiction.
Prosecutors are using a legal doctrine called “spark of life” to call Ross, as well as Floyd’s brother, to the witness stand.
The doctrine is controversial among defense attorneys and could complicate the trial.
Legal experts say it allows prosecutors to tug at jurors' emotions, but also allows the defense to highlight Floyd's illegal drug use.