Lansing residents respond to Chauvin’s guilty verdict

LANSING, me. –

Derek Chauvin’s verdict has sparked a range of emotions both across the country and here in Lansing.

“This is a very big deal to digest,” said Yanice Jackson, the executive director of a nonprofit in Lansing.

Chauvin, a former Minneapolis officer, was found guilty of murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd on Tuesday.

Floyd’s death sparked nationwide protests last summer. In Lansing, communities took to the streets to demand a racist settlement and police reform.

Jazinique Milton says the verdict left her with mixed feelings.

I’m glad he was found guilty, but does this really change our system?

“To be honest, I didn’t just want to watch everything that was going on in the country,” she said. “I’m glad he was found guilty, but does it really change our system?”

Jackson said her reaction was complicated too.

“I’m glad someone got convicted, but that still doesn’t bring that person back,” she said. “It doesn’t bring back all of the people who were killed before it.”

Almost a third of the people killed by police in 2020 were black, although blacks make up only 13 percent of the population, according to the Mapping Police Violence database.

Just minutes after the verdict was announced, a black teenage girl was fatally shot by police in Columbus, Ohio.

According to Milton, the cycle of police brutality must be tackled in order for progress to be made.

“I think we need to better monitor and test the police so that people become cops so that we don’t have this problem anymore,” she said. “We don’t want George Floyds anymore.”

Jackson says the ruling was a step in the right direction, but the nation’s road is long.

You just don’t undo more than 400 years of oppression in one day.

“You just don’t undo more than 400 years of oppression in one day. When I think of justice, I think of equality. I think the scales are balanced. You’re not balanced, ”she said. “That one thing doesn’t make up for the scales.”

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