Teen who took video of George Floyd's death reflects on anniversary

Darnella Frazier, a Minneapolis teen, recorded the video of an officer holding a knee to George Floyd's neck. (PEN America)

The Minneapolis teenager whose video captured the murder of George Floyd is reflecting on the one-year anniversary of Floyd's death.

Darnella Frazier was 17 years old when she pulled out her cell phone to record as then-officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd's neck for nearly 10 minutes. 

"I didn’t know this man from a can of paint, but I knew his life mattered," Frazier described in a Facebook post published on the anniversary. "I knew that he was in pain. I knew that he was another black man in danger with no power."

Frazier described in the weeks following Floyd's death how she struggled sleeping, haunted by the image of Floyd lifeless on the ground. She said she also suffered from panic and anxiety attacks every time she sees a police car.

"I am 18 now and I still hold the weight and trauma of what I witnessed a year ago," she wrote. "It’s a little easier now, but I’m not who I used to be. A part of my childhood was taken from me."

During Chauvin's trial, Frazier gave emotional testimony about what she witnessed and later shared with the world, as her video went viral. In April, a jury found Chauvin guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

"Even though this was a traumatic life-changing experience for me, I’m proud of myself," wrote Frazier. "If it weren’t for my video, the world wouldn’t have known the truth. I own that. My video didn’t save George Floyd, but it put his murderer away and off the streets."