The Highschool Junior Who Bravely Filmed George Floyd’s Murder Just Won a Pulitzer
In journalism, the honorary Pulitzer Prize is considered a coveted achievement. The prize, which is primarily granted to top-tier journalists, isn’t often presented to high school juniors, but citizen journalist Darnella Frazier is undoubtedly different. The American teenager gained acclaim in 2020 for her part in highlighting the brutal murder of George Floyd.
On May 25, 2020, Darnella Frazier captured the murder of George Floyd on her cellphone.
Soon after witnessing his tragic murder, Frazier posted the video on Facebook and ultimately undermined the Minneapolis Police Department’s initial report of Floyd’s death. Her video showed the final moments of Floyd’s life, including his cries for help and statements of “I can’t breathe.” Ultimately her bravery and video led to worldwide protests, the criminal charges brought against the four police officers in the case, and her testimony undoubtedly helped in the conviction of former police officer Derek Chauvin on murder charges.
This past Friday, Frazier was honored with a special award and citation from the Pulitzer Prize board.
In their announcement of this year’s winners, Pulitzer praised Frazier 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 journalist’s quest for truth and justice.”
On the one-year anniversary of Floyd’s murder, Frazier wrote in an Instagram post that “murdering people and abusing your power while doing it is not your job… It shouldn’t have to take people to actually go through something to understand it’s not ok. It’s called having a heart and understanding right from wrong…My video didn’t save George Floyd, but it put his murderer away and off the streets.”
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