The teenager whose video documenting the murder of George Floyd helped spark a global movement on racial injustice received a special mention from the Pulitzer Prize Board.
Darnella Frazier was 17 when she encountered Floyd, who was Black, being crushed to death on the ground by white police officer Derek Chauvin, who was kneeling on the man’s neck during an arrest in May last year.
She filmed using her phone while Floyd begged for her life. Frazier testified about the deep trauma he has experienced since, when he spoke at Chauvin’s trial in Minneapolis in April in which he was convicted of murder.
Frazier was cited “for bravely recording the murder of George Floyd, a video that sparked protests against police brutality around the world, highlighting the crucial role of citizens in journalists’ pursuit of truth and justice.” the Pulitzer board declared Friday. announced this year’s awards in media and arts.
Frazier told the jury at Chauvin’s trial: “I have spent nights that I stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not physically interacting and not saving his life.”
But his shocking video, filmed steadily for more than eight minutes, was central to the trial and was viewed by many, including Floyd’s relatives, as crucial in persuading the jury to plead guilty.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune newspaper won a Pulitzer Prize for breaking news for its coverage of Floyd’s assassination on May 25, 2020 and the resulting mass protests that lasted for months and the outbreak of civil unrest that initially swept through the city after the assassination.
The Star Tribune reporters’ coverage of events in the city was called by the board “urgent, authoritative and nuanced.”