Darnella Frazier, the teenager who recorded the murder of George Floyd last summer, he did won a special citation from the Pulitzer Prize court. If it weren’t for Frazier’s actions, one of the only official records we would have of Floyd’s death was the Minneapolis Police press release released on May 25, 2020. Document of 200 words not to mention the fact that former police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes and 29 seconds. He later testified at Chauvin’s trial, with his video proving his conviction.
On Friday, the Pulitzer Prize court said it decided to recognize Frazier for “bravely reporting the murder of George Floyd, a video that has sparked protests against police brutality around the world, highlighting the crucial role of citizens in the search for truth and justice by journalists. “Frazier, who was 17 when he filmed the film, was walking to a local store with his cousin when he saw the scene between Floyd and the Minneapolis cleaning. She took Floyd’s last moments, including his repeated requests for “I can’t breathe.”
This is not Frazier’s first award for his actions. Last year, she did has gained recognition from PEN America. “A lot of people call me a hero even if I don’t see myself as one. I was just in the right place at the right time,” Frazier wrote in a Facebook post marking the one-year anniversary of Floyd’s death. “Behind that smile, behind these awards, behind the advertising, I’m a girl trying to heal from something that reminds me every day.”
According to the Pulitzer Prize office, some amateur photographers have seen it in the past, and other winning journalism entries may have included movies that the individual shot on their phone. However, Frazier’s award says a lot about how phones have enabled citizen journalism in recent years. After all, it was Ramsey Orta and his video of Eric Garner’s death that made “I can’t breathe” in a cry of rejoicing against police violence aimed at communities of color.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, you can earn an affiliate commission.