Video report from ITV News US Correspondent Emma Murphy
The teenager who shot the viral video of George Floyd under the knee of a police officer testified on Tuesday that she began recording because “it wasn't right, he was suffering.”Darnella Frazier, now 18, said she was walking to a convenience store with her younger cousin when she came upon the officers restraining Mr Floyd. She said she sent her cousin into the shop so she wouldn't see Mr Floyd "terrified, scared, begging for his life."
Ms Frazier grew emotional on the witness stand, breathing heavily and crying as she viewed pictures of officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Mr Floyd last May.
Emma Murphy talks about the mood in court during the trial of Derek Chauvin:
Mr Floyd’s death and the video of him pleading for his life triggered protests around the world and a reckoning over racism and police brutality in the US.
Tearing up, Ms Frazier said: "There have been nights...I stayed up apologising to George Floyd for not doing more and not physically interacting and not saving his life."
Ms Frazier added that one of the bystanders, who identified herself as a Minneapolis firefighter, pleaded repeatedly with officers to check Mr Floyd’s pulse. According to Ms Frazier, Chauvin ignored the firefighter and continued to kneel on Floyd’s neck. Fellow officer Tou Thao wouldn’t let onlookers get close, Ms Frazier added.
“They definitely put their hands on the Mace and we all pulled back,” she told the jury.
Darnella Frazier becomes emotional while testifying
"I look at my brothers, I look at my cousins, my uncles, because they are all black...I look at how that could have been one of them," Darnella added.
Ms Frazier said of Chauvin: “He just stared at us, looked at us. He had like this cold look - heartless. He didn’t care. It seemed as if he didn’t care what we were saying.”
Chauvin's attorney Eric Nelson sought to establish that Chauvin and his colleagues were made to feel threatened and distracted by a growing crowd of angry onlookers.
However, when Ms Frazier was asked by a prosecutor whether she saw violence anywhere on the scene, she replied: “Yes, from the cops - from Chauvin, and from officer Thao.”
Donald Williams testifies on Tuesday
Ms Frazier's testimony came as the court learned that Mr Floyd was pinned under Chauvin's knee for nine minutes and 29 seconds. Before this, it was widely accepted that Mr Floyd was held down for eight minutes and 46 seconds.
Earlier on Tuesday, a man who was among the onlookers shouting at Chauvin to get off Mr Floyd testified that he called 911 after paramedics took Floyd away, because he believed he "witnessed a murder.”
Donald Williams, a former wrestler who said he was trained in mixed martial arts, returned to the witness stand a day for a second day, On Monday, he described seeing Floyd struggle for air and “slowly fade away...like a fish in a bag.”
Chauvin is charged with unintentional second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter.