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Utah activists celebrate 'moment of joy' after Chauvin verdict announced

Posted at 10:28 PM, Apr 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-21 00:31:54-04

SALT LAKE CITY — The guilty verdict handed down to Derek Chauvin Tuesday has many members of Utah’s Black community feeling like justice was served.

“It felt like no matter what, there was never going to be justice done to help Black people feel whole in this country,” said community activist Darlene McDonald.

McDonald also serves as a member of the Salt Lake City Racial Equity in Policing Commission. She agonized waiting for the verdict to be read.

“I called three people. I said, ‘I am not ok. I am shaking. I am scared. I am in tears,’” McDonald said.

When she heard the word “guilty” read three times, she felt a flood of emotions.

“I screamed. It was a moment of joy of justice,” McDonald said.

The verdict brought many people to the mural of George Floyd located on 800 South and 300 West in Salt Lake City.

WATCH: Hundreds take to downtown SLC after Chauvin guilty verdict

Many gathered to pay their respects and reflect on a verdict they see as a step of progress in holding those in authority accountable.

“We watched a man die. We watched a man die,” McDonald said. “We can say his life mattered. His life mattered. That’s what it meant.”