Sunny Hostin Tears Up While Reporting on Derek Chauvin Verdict: 'This Is What Justice Finally Looks Like'
Derek Chavin was found guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter in the killing of George Floyd
The journalist and The View co-host, 52, broke down in tears on Tuesday as she spoke about the guilty verdicts during ABC News' coverage of the trial.
"I've been a lawyer for 27 years, and I remember when I was in law school during my first year, the Rodney King verdict came out and it was an acquittal for four officers who — on video — beat and stomped and tased a man, beat a man 56 times with a baton," Hostin, who is also a senior legal correspondent for ABC News, began.
"I believed my eyes then, so believed my eyes this time with George Floyd," she said.
Jurors had deliberated for approximately 10 hours before finding Chauvin, 44, guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter in the killing of Floyd, 46, last May.
Though Hostin said she "knew that fast verdicts always hint at an agreement" of conviction, she was still initially apprehensive about a guilty verdict "because of the history in this country, because it is so rare that police officers are convicted, because Black men and Black boys are killed by police with impunity in this country — and that is just the truth — at a rate five times more than their white counterparts."
"Because I am the mother of an 18-year-old boy who is now in South Africa, and I feel that he is safer in South Africa than he is in his own country, I am so relieved that this is what justice finally looks like for my community," she said tearfully.
The guilty verdict came nearly a year after Floyd died facedown on the ground with his hands cuffed behind him as Chauvin, a white officer, pinned his knee to Floyd's neck for more than nine minutes.
Listen below to the episode of our daily podcast PEOPLE Every Day for more on Derek Chauvin's conviction.
Floyd's murder spawned protests across the country last summer over police brutality and racism in the United States.
Reflecting on the trial's outcome, Hostin said that "while I know that this does not bring George Floyd back to his family ... at least I believe now that the movement that we've seen since his murder on video for the world to see, is not just a moment."
Added Hostin, "I really believe that this is a movement that we've seen and for that I am so, so very thankful, that perhaps we will see real change — much-needed change — in this country."
Following his conviction, Chauvin was immediately taken into custody and will be sentenced in eight weeks. He faces up to 40 years in prison for the most serious charge.
To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:
- Campaign Zero (joincampaignzero.org) which works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.
- ColorofChange.org works to make the government more responsive to racial disparities.
- National Cares Mentoring Movement (caresmentoring.org) provides social and academic support to help Black youth succeed in college and beyond.