‘It was emotional:’ Mount Dora man travels to Minneapolis to witness historic Chauvin verdict

Thony Hilario decided to fly night jury started to deliberate

MINNEAPOLIS, Min. – A Central Florida man wanted to be in the front row of history, so he decided to fly to Minneapolis ahead of the verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial.

Thony Hilario made it hours before the jury delivered the verdict and was able to hear their final decision.

“It was emotional because you notice that all that work that went in the Summer of 2020, it had a fruit, it beared a fruit and something came out of it,” Hilario said.

The Mount Dora resident was just outside the courthouse in Minneapolis when former police officer, Derek Chauvin was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd.

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Chauvin’s conviction comes after the video of Floyd’s death went viral, showing the law enforcement officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes as he was handcuffed. Floyd died on May 25, 2020. Nearly a year later, Hilario said he was worried justice would not be served.

“This isn’t the first time where there has been such a very strong evidence towards a police officer that has committed a crime where they have gotten off,” he said. That’s why the guilty verdict had such an emotional reaction, according to Hilario.

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