Darnella Frazier, Teen Who Recorded Murder of George Floyd, Awarded a Pulitzer Prize

By: Alyssa Wilson

Darnella Frazier, the teen who recorded the murder of George Floyd, was awarded a 2021 Pulitzer Prize Special Citation for recording the tragic moment.  

RELATED: ‘The work continues’: BNC remembers George Floyd one year after his death  

Frazier recorded the video of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck in May 2020. Then, at the age of 17, she took the stand during Chauvin’s trial and admitted she spent nights apologizing to Floyd for not doing more to save him, NPR reported.  

RELATED: George Floyd featured on cover of TIME Magazine as famil fights for legislative justice  

Many praised the teen for her bravery and credited her for the guilty verdict in the case, including Spike Lee, DeRay McKesson, Anita Hill and Cory Booker.  

RELATED: BNC Exclusive: Donald Williams II talks murder of George Floyd, Derek Chauvin trial  

In December 2020, PEN America honored the teen. During the virtual award ceremony, Spike Lee said, “I’m so proud of my sister. She documented the murder of George Floyd, our brother. King Floyd. And that footage reverberated around this God’s Earth, and people took to the streets all over this Earth.”  

RELATED: Derek Chauvin verdict: Jury finds the former officer guilty on all counts  

Pulitzer awarded Frazier the special citation, “For courageously recording the murder of George Floyd, a video that spurred protests against police brutality around the world, highlight the crucial role of citizens in journalists’ quest for truth and justice.”  

Marc Lamont Hill, the host of BNC’s Black News Tonightsaid he hopes the award comes with mental health resources for Frazier. “She witnessed trauma. She witnessed, as many of us did, the death of that man. That award is not going to help her sleep at night. It’s not going to help heal the wounds of state violence. I hope that that award comes with more than just a piece of paper because that sister deserves a whole lot more than that.”  

If you or someone you know is struggling from trauma triggered by this story, resources are available here. 

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