WASHINGTON — After less than 12 hours of deliberation, a jury found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of murdering George Floyd.
Floyd’s death last year sparked global protests over systemic racism and police brutality.
The verdict was announced Tuesday afternoon to a country filled with tense energy in cities from coast to coast as areas prepared for possible unrest.
Near the court house in Minneapolis, reaction was heartfelt and passionate as people watched live streams on their phones as the judge revealed the outcome of the trial.
Around the country, many celebrities and politicians turned to social media to share their thoughts.
Hollywood producer Ava DuVernay reacted on Twitter with "3!," referring to Chauvin being found guilty on all three charges. DuVernay has been an outspoken voice on racial justice issues.
Former President Barack Obama wrote, "we stand with all those who are committed to guaranteeing every American the full measure of justice that George and so many others have been denied."
Pop singer Mariah Carey wrote simply "Hallelujah!!!!!!!!"
NBA star LeBron James wrote, in all capital letters, a word heard often in the days leading up to the verdict: "ACCOUNTABILITY."
Actress Kerry Washington said on Twitter, "this fight for justice is not over. We have a lot of work to do. There is more fight ahead of us."
Inauguration poet Amanda Gorman wrote: "A reminder that victory would be George Floyd being alive. Every day Black Americans worry if they will be next is another day without justice."
Bernice King, the CEO of Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change wrote, "This is a turning point."
Actress Mia Farrow wrote "GUILTY!!!"
Actor Chris events wrote: "Justice. Sending love to George Floyd’s family and friends."
Lawmakers from both parties expressed satisfaction with Tuesday’s guilty verdict.
California Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters said: “I’m not celebrating, I’m relieved.”
South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, the chamber’s only Black Republican, said he is thankful for a verdict that shows “our justice system continues to become more just.” But GOP Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst says, “I guess I’m in agreement” with the jury’s decision.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California expressed thanks to Floyd “for sacrificing your life for justice.”
"Because of you [George Floyd] and because of thousands, millions of people around the world who came out for justice, your name will always be synonymous with justice," Pelosi said.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York says Congress must keep working on legislation “to bring meaningful change” to police departments.
Whoopi Goldberg wrote that "No one wins.. George Floyd is still gone..and finally someone was responsible... Derek Chauvin"
Even in restaurants and bars, patrons watched anxiously and reacted when the verdict was announced.