Eric Nelson, the lawyer for Chauvin, said he might demand the judge legally order people involved to remain silent.
“If such public statements continue, I’ll be seeking a gag order,” Nelson said.
Chauvin, whose bail has been set at $1 million, appeared via video from the Oak Park Heights prison wearing an orange jumpsuit and a coronavirus mask.
The other defendants — Thao, Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane — appeared in person.
The four, who were fired from the Minneapolis police force one day after Floyd’s death, each face up to 40 years behind bars.
The bystander video of Floyd’s death stunned and horrified Americans, igniting protests and riots in cities across the country and sparking a national debate on racism and police violence.
Floyd was detained for the minor charge of attempting to use a counterfeit $20 bill, and while in handcuffs, two of the officers held him down on the street while Chauvin pressed his knee to Floyd’s neck and the fourth officer stood watch.
“I can’t breathe,” Floyd said on several occasions before losing consciousness.
An independent autopsy later revealed that Floyd died of suffocation due to the police officer’s pressure on his neck and cited the cause of death as “homicide.”
The original complaint said Floyd was pinned by the neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds but this was revised down by 60 seconds last week.
The judge set the next procedural hearing for September, with all parties needing to assemble a massive amount of evidence.
Prosecutor Matthew Frank, an assistant Minnesota attorney general, said so far there are more than 8,000 individual pages of discovery and hundreds of audio recordings and photographs date-stamped in the case.