A year on from George Floyd’s death, tens of thousands of people once again took to the streets to honor the man who’s name became a byword for racial injustice.
From his hometown of Minneapolis where thousands marched through the streets, to Atlanta, Georgia, from Brooklyn to the White House: the ripples from a single death at the hands of a police officer continued to be felt strongly.
‘It´s been a troubling year, a long year,’ Bridgett Floyd told the crowd in downtown Minneapolis.
‘But we made it…. The love is here. George is here.’
In New York, video footage shared on social media captured the moment an NYPD patrol car knocked over a cyclist amid chaotic scenes near the Brooklyn Bridge.
Concerned onlookers rushed to check if the cyclist was OK. An NYPD spokesman said the man suffered minor injuries and refused medical attention.
A family-friendly street festival, musical performances and moments of silence were held Tuesday to honor George Floyd and mark the year since he died at the hands of Minneapolis police, a death captured on wrenching video by 17-year-old bystander Darnella Frazier that galvanized the racial justice movement and continues to bring calls for change.
Floyd’s sister Bridgett and other family members held a moment of silence at a ‘Celebration of Life’ event at a downtown Minneapolis park that included music, food trucks, an inflatable bouncy house and a vaccination stand.
A few miles away, at the site of the intersection where Floyd died, dozens of people kneeled around a steel fist sculpture for several minutes – symbolizing the 9 minutes, 29 seconds during which Floyd was pinned down.
Hours before the Minneapolis festivities, the intersection where Floyd died was disrupted by gunfire.
Associated Press video from 38th Street and Chicago Avenue – informally known as George Floyd Square – showed people running for cover as shots rang out.
Police said a man, who they believe was injured in the shooting, went to a nearby hospital with a gunshot wound. Police said he was in critical condition but was expected to survive. There were no immediate arrests.
Members of Floyd’s family met in Washington with President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, who urged Congress to quickly pass a law in Floyd´s name that would bring changes to policing.
A moment of silence to honor Floyd was also held in New York and a rally was held in Los Angeles, Manhattan and Brooklyn in New York, Washington DC, Boston, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago and Houston.
Floyd, 46, who was Black, died May 25, 2020, after then-Officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck, pinning him to the ground for about 9 1/2 minutes. Chauvin, who is white, was convicted last month of murder and faces sentencing June 25. Three other fired officers still face trial.
NEW YORK: A man holds up a poster of George Floyd as demonstrators attend a vigil at Brooklyn Museum to remember the murder of Floyd
MINNEAPOLIS: People celebrate the life of George Floyd at the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue where the black man was murdered a year ago
MIAMI: Members of the Proud Boys look on as two women kiss near the Torch of Friendship, where people gathered to remember George Floyd on the one-year anniversary of his death at the hands of a police officer
ARIZONA: Fans and players pause for a moment of silence to honor George Floyd prior to Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series between the Phoenix Suns and the Los Angeles Lakers in Phoenix
WHITE HOUSE: A family member holds onto Gianna Floyd, daughter of George Floyd, as family members face reporters at the White House following their meeting with U.S. President
ATLANTA: Stephen Jackson, former NBA player and George Floyd’s friend joined protesters in Atlanta to mark the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death
BOSTON: In Boston, protesters carried signs that read: ‘Mass action against police brutality’ as they marched through the streets
WHITE HOUSE: Ellie Amani, of Washington, stands on Black Lives Matter Plaza near the White House as she waits to see the family of George Floyd
Philip Crowther, a reporter working for AP Global Media Services, which provides live video coverage, reported hearing as many as 30 gunshots about a block from the intersection before the Minneapolis rally. Crowther said a storefront window appeared to have been broken by gunshots.
‘Very quickly things got back to normal,’ Crowther said. ‘People here who spend a significant amount of time, the organizers, were running around asking, `Does anyone need a medic?´’
Like other major cities, Minneapolis has been struggling with rising gun violence, a problem made worse, in part, by many officers leaving the embattled force since Floyd’s death.
A 6-year-old girl was fatally shot and two other children wounded in recent weeks.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey last week unveiled sweeping public safety proposals aimed at fixing the problem. Other groups are pursuing a more radical remaking of the police department.
On Tuesday evening, activists and demonstrators gathered with some families of people who had died in interactions with the New York Police Department at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
They called for defunding the police, holding officers accountable and removing police officers from schools. Following the rally, they set off on a march through Brooklyn streets.
A witness captured footage of a confrontation on the Brooklyn Bridge , moments after a car had pushed through a group of protesters on bikes.
The Brooklyn-bound side of the bridge closed for a period.
The NYPD later Tweeted: ‘We encourage everyone to exercise their constitutional right to protest and everyone’s right to self-expression but throwing debris into the roadway only creates a dangerous and hazardous condition to the public.’
A kneeling demonstrator wearing a black ‘Black Lives Matter’ bandanna across their face takes part in a protest in New York, one of more than a dozen protests across the US
Moblie Burrell marches during a racial justice rally on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death in Boston. Tens of thousands of people took to the streets around the country
People take a knee during a moment of silence on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death on Tuesday in Minneapolis
Jack Curtis, of Arlington, Mass., holds a Black Lives Matter flag at a racial injustice rally at Franklin Park in Boston. The BLM movement was galvanized in the wake of Floyd’s killing
A protestor wearing a ‘I can’t breathe’ T-shirt confronts police officers before taking part in a rally to mark the death of Floyd in New York
‘Where there’s people, there’s power’ is written on a sign at George Floyd Square in Minneapolis on the anniversary of his death
Demonstrators march through lower Manhattan during a rally on Tuesday. Some among the gathered protesters said not enough was being done to reform the police
Protesters cross the Brooklyn Bridge as one of the more than dozen rallies and march for George Floyd on the anniversary of his death
Six years old Ashley von Holdt (R) and Dahlia James von Holdt (L) raise up their fist as people gather on the anniversary of the police murder of George Floyd, at George Floyd Memorial Square in Minneapolis
The intersection of 38th and Chicago has been barricaded since soon after Floyd’s death. It quickly turned into a memorial – and also a challenging spot for the city, with police officers not always welcome.
The square was transformed Tuesday into an outdoor festival, with food, children´s activities and music. At times, people danced in the street. Artwork and signs from protests after Floyd’s death also were on display.
One group hosted an open mic next to a greenhouse that community members constructed earlier this year to house flowers left by mourners. Nearby, a brass band played for passersby.
The celebration also included a candlelight vigil and capped several days of marches, rallies and panel discussions about his death and confronting racial discrimination.
Xavier Simmons, 24, from Racine, Wisconsin, chanted ‘Say his name!’ as people kneeled. Simmons said he hopes people taking part in the festivities will both honor Floyd´s life and legacy and continue to ‘uplift and empower this movement.’
‘We got the verdict that we needed, but it´s never going to change until we make a change,’ he said.
In Miami, members of the far-right Proud Boys including leader Enrique Tarrio showed up to counter-protest people who’d gathered at the Torch of Friendship.
Carrying signs saying ‘support police, not criminals’, the Proud Boys members wore T-shirts saying ‘Western Chauvinist’, in a show of support for the man who was convicted of murdering Floyd.
In Phenix, fans and players paused for a moment of silence to honor George Floyd prior to Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series between the Phoenix Suns and the Los Angeles Lakers.
A Black Lives Matter supporter pauses while balancing a ball on his back on a span of the Brooklyn Bridge during a march Tuesday afternoon
Protesters marched across the Brooklyn Bridge as the sun sets behind the Manhattan skyline, carrying ‘abolish the police’ signs
The few dozen marchers and cyclists voiced their support for George Floyd a year on from his death. One was later knocked over by an NYPD patrol car, but wasn’t seriously injured
A protester fist bumps with a driver during a rally in Boston. The man carries a sign which reads: ‘I want them to hear you when you scream their name’
A candlelit vigil was held at the Brooklyn museum to commemorate the anniversary of George Floyd’s death on May 25 last year
Things were peaceful at the Brooklyn museum, but after marchers crossed the Brooklyn Bridge later in the evening a cyclist was struck by the mirror of an NYPD patrol care
A person holds an artist’s impression of George Floyd at a gathering at the Brooklyn museum, one of dozens of gatherings around the US
People brought signs, candles and flowers to the Brooklyn museum mark the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death
People sit on the billboards above Cup Foods while they watch a concert at the George Floyd Square on the first anniversary of Floyd’s death, in Minneapolis
Earl Vaughn, 20, of Minneapolis, attended the downtown event and said despite its celebratory atmosphere: ‘For all this a Black man had to die, so that´s really unfortunate.’
In New York City, elected officials, including Mayor Bill de Blasio and U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, joined the Rev. Al Sharpton in kneeling for 9 minutes, 29 seconds. ‘As we took a knee, imagine how long that was on a human being´s neck,’ Sharpton said. ‘Never switched knees, just dug in. It´s time we correct policing in this country.’
Several Floyd family members, including his young daughter Gianna, met with Biden and Harris earlier Tuesday. Biden, who previously pledged to continue fighting for racial justice, said he hopes the Senate can quickly pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act and get it to his desk.
‘We have to act,’ he said of the legislation that would ban chokeholds and no-knock police raids and create a national registry for officers disciplined for serious misconduct.
Floyd´s brother Philonise told CNN he thinks about George ‘all the time.’
‘My sister called me at 12 o´clock last night and said ´This is the day our brother left us,” he said, adding: ‘I think things have changed. I think it is moving slowly but we are making progress.’
Also Tuesday, the U.S. Senate voted to confirm Kristen Clarke as assistant attorney general for civil rights, the first Black woman to hold the position. In the last few weeks, the Justice Department under Biden has announced sweeping investigations into the police in Minneapolis and Louisville and brought federal civil rights charges against the officers involved in Floyd´s death.
Separately, the Floyd family announced the launch of a fund that will make grants to businesses and community organizations in the neighborhood, as well as broader grants ‘encouraging the success and growth of Black citizens and community harmony.’ The money comes from $500,000 earmarked as part of the city’s $27 million civil settlement for the Floyd family.
The lawyer for George Floyd’s family said from the White House Tuesday that his blood is on police reform legislation as he demanded Congress get a bill passed after Floyd’s relatives and friends met with President Joe Biden.
Steve Wilson attends The Laugh Factory Commemorates The Anniversary Of George Floyd’s Death at The Laugh Factory in West Hollywood, California
Mike E. Winfield was all-smiles as he attended an event at The Laugh Factory in West Hollywood, one of dozens held around the country
Demonstrators march to attend a vigil at Brooklyn Museum to remember the murder of George Floyd, late Tuesday
Stephen Jackson, close friend to George Floyd, speaks to those who have gathered to march and memorialize Floyd in Atlanta on the anniversary of his death
President Joe Biden met with Floyd family members an spoke about sharing snacks with Floyd’s six-year-old daughter, Gianna.
‘We have to respect the spilled blood that’s on this legislation – it must be meaningful and we can do this together,’ attorney Benjamin Crump said in a statement outside the Oval Office following a meeting with Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
Standing behind Crump were Floyd’s brothers Rodney, Philonise and Terrence, his nephew Brandon Williams, Gianna and her mother Roxie Washington. Also joining the group were other lawyers on the team for Floyd’s family and close friends identified as Dominique and William.
‘I got a chance to spend a lot of time with Gianna and the family, and we just talked about – you know, it’s the one-year anniversary,’ Biden told reporters as he left the White House for a brief trip to Wilmington.
In a statement on the meeting Tuesday, Biden said: ‘The Floyd family has shown extraordinary courage, especially his young daughter Gianna, who I met again today’
Moments before departing the White House by helicopter a short time later for a flight back to his home state of Delaware, Biden told reporters he had spoken to negotiators on the bill and was ‘hopeful that sometime after Memorial Day we’ll have an agreement.’
‘We have to act,’ Biden said in a statement issued by the White House. ‘The battle for the soul of America has been a constant push and pull between the American ideal that we’re all created equal and the harsh reality that racism has long torn us apart.’
Crump revealed that he and the family would go back to Capitol Hill on Tuesday afternoon to meet with Senators Cory Booker, a Democrat, and Tim Scott, a Republican, both black lawmakers who are working on negotiations to get a bipartisan police reform bill to the floor.
Floyd’s family said from the White House Tuesday that his blood is on police reform legislation as he demanded Congress get a bill passed after Floyd’s relatives and friends met with President Joe Biden.
Senator Tim Scott, the lead Republican negotiator, told reporters on Tuesday that a main point of contention remained qualified immunity, a legal doctrine that shields individual police officers from lawsuits in certain circumstances.
Republicans oppose provisions in the bill rolling back such immunity, while many liberal Democrats say they would only support a bill that abolished it.
‘We have a long way to go still, but it’s starting to take form,’ Scott said.
People take a knee during a moment of silence on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis
The intersection where George Floyd died was disrupted by gunfire Tuesday, just hours before it was to be the site of a family-friendly street festival marking the anniversary of his death at the hands of police
A bullet casing is seen after shots were fired in George Floyd Square on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death on Tuesday in Minneapolis
People walk through George Floyd Square after shots were fired on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death on Tuesday
People returned to George Floyd Square after shots were fired on the one year anniversary of his death
A man boards up a broken window to a barber shop after shots were fired in George Floyd Square in Minneapolis
Local leaders and politicians, including Rev. Al Sharpton, left, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, second from left, kneel for for more than nine minutes to remember the murder of George Floyd in New York
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif, center, talks with Philonise Floyd, the brother of George Floyd, left, as Rep. Karen Bass, D-Calif., right, looks on, as they stand for a photo during a meeting with Floyd family and Congressional members, at the Capitol in Washington
A ‘Black Lives Matter’ banner marking the one-year anniversary of the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis USA police officer, hangs from the U.S. Embassy in Madrid, Spain
Gianna Floyd, the daughter of George Floyd, leads the chant ‘say his name’ as members of the Floyd family talk with reporters after meeting with President Joe Biden at the White House, Tuesday, May 25, 2021, in Washington
A doll in a casket is displayed near George Floyd square on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis
People take a knee during a moment of silence on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death on Tuesday, May 25 in Minneapolis
A violinist takes a knee during a moment of silence on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis Tuesday
Demonstrators protest and march, one wearing a T-shirt that read ‘Black trans lives matter’ in New York Tuesday
Jack Curtis, of Arlington, Mass., holds a Black Lives Matter flag at a racial injustice rally on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death at Franklin Park in Boston
Demonstrators take part in a protest and march to remember the murder of George Floyd on Tuesday, May 25, 2021, in New York
Black Lives Matter supporters march through downtown Los Angeles past LA City Hall on the first anniversary of George Floyd’s death
Floyd family attorney Benjamin Crump, seated right, joined by Philonise Floyd, brother of George Floyd, seated left, and other family members and supporters, speaks with broadcaster Roland Martin at Black Lives Matter Plaza near the White House in Washington
Philonise Floyd, brother of George Floyd, talks with family members and supporters as they enter a waiting vehicle after speaking with broadcaster Roland Martin at Black Lives Matter Plaza near the White House in Washington
US rapper Lonnie Rashid Lynn, better known as Common, takes a selfie with a fan as people gather on the anniversary of the police murder of George Floyd, at George Floyd Memorial Square in Minneapolis
Demonstrators arrive to attend a vigil at Brooklyn Museum to remember the murder of George Floyd, late Tuesday. The Brooklyn Bridge was closed for a period
David Mulholland, of Putney, Vt., kneels for 9 minutes and 29 seconds during a vigil in Putney, Vermont,
Proud Boys keep a close watch on George Floyd protesters during a counter-demonstration in Miami on Tuesday
A small group of people gather for a vigil on the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s murder in Lafayette Square near the White House on Tuesday
At a rally in Lower Manhattan in New York, three dozen activists met to commemorate the anniversary.
Darnella Frazier, the young woman who captured the cellphone of Floyd’s death, released a powerful statement on Facebook to mark the anniversary.
‘A year ago, today I witnessed a murder. The victim’s name was George Floyd,’ she wrote in a Facebook post.
‘I didn’t know this man from a can of paint, but I knew his life mattered. I knew that he was in pain. I knew that he was another black man in danger with no power.’
She said witnessing the event and becoming known as the ‘girl who recorded George Floyd‘s death’ had been a heavy burden to bear.
‘A lot of people call me a hero even though I don’t see myself as one. I was just in the right place at the right time. Behind this smile, behind these awards, behind the publicity, I’m a girl trying to heal from something I am reminded of every day.’
Frazier made a touching tribute to the man who she never met until that day, and whose life she had seen be extinguished.
‘I can’t express enough how I wish things could have went different, but I want you to know you will always be in my heart. I’ll always remember this day because of you. May your soul rest in peace.’
The New York Times reported that last year’s Black Lived Matter protests in the wake of Floyd’s killing were the largest in US history, with more than 500 separate demonstrations on June 6 last year.
In Washington, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told George Floyd’s daughter Gianna on Tuesday that her father changed the world.
Before heading to the White House, the family met with Pelosi and Representative Karen Bass on the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s death.
‘Gianna said, ‘My daddy will change the world.’ Indeed, her prediction is coming true,’ Pelosi told reporters as she stood alongside members of Floyd’s family before they traveled across town to meet with Biden and Harris for a closed-door meeting.
George’s brother Philonise Floyd said: ‘Today is the day that he set the world in a rage. We all said enough is enough.’
He then leaned down toward Gianna and asked: ‘Your dad is going to do what?’
She replied: ‘Change the world.’
Philonise also urged Congress to get a police reform bill on Biden’s desk as soon as possible.
Globally, a rally took place in Germany and Floyd’s death was marked by U.S. embassies in Greece and Spain.