CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The nation has been following Derek Chauvin’s murder trial, including many people here in West Virginia.
Some West Virginians’s say they are happy with outcome of the guilty verdicts. However they say when it comes to race relation, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done.
“It wasn’t a theatrics, it didn’t come as entertainment for the viewing audience. It was a serious trial with both the prosecution and defense doing a real excellent job.” said, Pastor Matthew J. Watts, of Grace Bible Church in Charleston.
Watts also says that today proved that justice can be served in the United States. “This shows that our system really can work,” Watts adds that Chauvin does not represent all police officers. “And I’m confident when I say this. That 99 and half better percent of the police officers in the United States of America would’ve never done what Derek Chauvin did,” he said.
And Dijon Stokes with ACLU of West Virgina says, although he is happy with the results, it’s not a celebratory moment. “This is only a moment of justice. I know at least for myself this isn’t something we necessarily celebrate, we just acknowledge that this is a step towards justice.” said, Stokes.
Both community activists say in the end, they hope this trial will strengthen the relationship between communities and law enforcement. “So I’m hopeful that we as Charlestonians, Kanawha County, and West Virginians, can look at this and say, what have we learned. What can we do to improve relationships between the community and between law enforcement.” said, Watts.
“To call out of all these injustices and continue to fight against it. To make West Virginia an equal and fair place for everyone.”Dijon Stokes, ACLU of West Virginia