The teenager who recorder the arrest and murder of George Floyd was given a special award by the Pulitzer prizes board for her contribution in solidifying the international fight for racial justice.
Then 17-year-old Darnella Frazier witnessed how the Black man, Floyd, was knelt on the neck and pinned to the ground by a white police officer Derek Chauvin in May 2020.
“I cried so hard,” Franzier recollects as she filmed the incident that moved America.
The teenager used her mobile phone to capture how the Black man pleaded the police to spare his life. She voiced out the trauma she went through after the incident when she appeared at the police officer’s trial last April in Minneapolis. Chauvin was found guilty of murder.
“It’s been nights I stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not physically interacting and not saving his life,” the teenager said during the trial.
On Friday, the Pulitzer board said that Franzier was recognized “for courageously recording the murder of George Floyd, a video that spurred protests against police brutality, around the world, highlighting the crucial role of citizens in journalists’ quest for truth and justice.”
Franzier’s shaky eight-minute video became the key in convincing the jury to convict the suspect.
Apart from the teenager, the Minneapolis Star Tribune newspaper also bagged a Pulitzer award for carrying the breaking news on Floyd on May 25 last year. The reports of the outlet have triggered mass protests and have awakened month-long public unrest.
The Pulitzer board said the coverage of Star Tribune journalists’ of the incident is regarded as “urgent, authoritative and nuanced.”