Chicagoans react to Derek Chauvin sentencing

CHICAGO (WLS) -- It was unusually quiet Friday afternoon inside D.Alexander Studioz in Bridgeport as they watched the sentencing hearing for former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin.

"Watching it especially amongst my peers was definitely monumental," said Devon McGee, who owns the salon.

RELATED: Derek Chauvin sentenced to 22.5 years in prison

Ashley Munson, who recently organized a Juneteenth march and rally in the Loop, was anxious waiting for Chauvin's sentence.

"My stomach was in knots just because this is more than just the trial," said Munson with March for Us.

No one in this salon said they will ever forget watching the video of George Floyd losing his life.

"It could have happened to anyone in my family so this has been very emotional to see this happen," said Ashia Murph, hair stylist.

Troy Williams, a barber, echoed her sentiments.

"It poses the question how do you trust the police. If can happen to him, it can happen to any of us," he said.

There were cheers when the judge sentenced Chauvin to 22 and a half years in prison.

"I believe this is a start and it is an example to let people know that they just can't kill us and get away with it," Murph said.

Many in the salon said they felt the trial would have played out differently without video of the killing. They said there's more work that needs to be done to reform policing and holding officers accountable.

"I think you will see more and more people being willing and stronger to speak up about police brutality," Munson said.

McGee said without policy changes, there could be more deadly encounters with the police.

"If we take this moment and just get relax I believe it can happen again," he said.
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