University Communications


Chauvin Trial Husky Update

Having spent over a decade in and around the courtroom as a criminal defense attorney, professor of Criminal Justice John Baker, J.D. possesses a deep understanding of a criminal trial.

During the trial of Derek Chauvin, which is getting much national attention and on the minds of many, Baker is walking Husky community through the process.

The impact of what was witnessed May 25, 2020 has been substantial. The Chauvin Trial Husky Update is Baker’s way to help process the feelings, emotions, and logistics of the trial.

Dr. John Baker“The best way I know how to process the trauma is to better understand what is going on and break down some of the trial lingo,” said Baker.

In the vlogs, which are being produced once or twice per week during the trial, Baker breaks down the strategies and tactics used by attorneys and highlights significant testimony.

Baker is also sourcing experts and community leaders to shed light on the trial. In an April 7 post, Baker discussed a multi-agency effort to ensure the safety of the public with Lieutenant Kelly Mager of the Minnesota State Patrol.

Mager, a 2019 graduate of the Public Safety Executive Leadership program at St. Cloud State, was appointed to a special assignment by Governor Walz to focus on the public safety needs approaching the outcome of the trial. The outcome: Operation Safety Net.

Students in Baker’s criminal law and criminal procedure classes this semester are following this trial closely.

Criminal Justice major and aspiring criminal defense attorney Amelia Green believes Baker’s videos are what St. Cloud State needs right now. Green finds his background of practicing law and teaching style perfect for the subject matter – breaking down exactly what is going on in the courtroom from how the seating arrangement is set up to how the legal process is going to take place.

“Professor Baker stresses the importance of being an objective thinker, to truly follow and understand how and why certain things are taking place,” Green said.

Upcoming guests for the vlog include a practicing prosecutor and judge.

“I am hoping we gain a better sense of community and that we come out of this understanding and valuing all members of our Husky community,” Baker said. “It is often through the unfortunate circumstances of trauma a community experiences that brings them closer together.”

Questions about the trial may be submitted to Professor John Baker, J.D. at

See all the updates: Chaunvin Trial Husky Update