The judge presiding over the trial of officer Jeronimo Yanez in the fatal shooting of Philando Castile issued an order Thursday outlining rules of decorum for attendees, including a prohibition on opinionated facial expressions.
Ramsey County District Judge William H. Leary III’s order said attendees cannot wear or carry signs, buttons or clothing or “engage in other forms of expression that refer to or call attention to this matter, the Decedent, parties or witnesses.”
Leary’s order also banned attendees from making any “facial expression, gesture, utterance, or change of demeanor that conveys any opinion or belief in response to a statement of a party or witness, argument or statement of counsel, or ruling of the court.”
Yanez is scheduled to go to trial on May 30.
Although most judges don’t file orders before a trial outlining courtroom etiquette, judges routinely ask attendees to refrain from making verbal or physical outbursts in the middle of court.
Yanez, 29, a St. Anthony police officer, was charged Nov. 16 with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm for killing Castile, 32, during a traffic stop in Falcon Heights on July 6. Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her then 4-year-old daughter were also in the car.
Yanez has pleaded not guilty to all counts. His attorney filed a petition Wednesday asking the Minnesota Supreme Court to consider granting a change of venue for the trial. Leary and the Minnesota Court of Appeals both rejected the request.