Thousands of protesters stormed the security perimeter of the Barclays Center in New York as protests spread across the United States over the murder of George Floyd, a black man from Minneapolis who died after being trapped by the neck under the knee of a white policeman.
Police made numerous arrests during Friday’s massive demonstration in Brooklyn, charging protesters handcuffed into city buses lined up on Atlantic Avenue, closing a main thoroughfare.
A diverse group of protesters applauded hip-hop music and attempted to discuss police brutality with police in riot gear, who sometimes rushed into the crowd to rescue people from arrest after the launch of bottles and other projectiles.
Demonstrators at a Lower Manhattan “We Can’t Breathe” Vigil and Gathering Called For Legislation Prohibiting Police “Chokehold” Used By City Police Officer In Death Of Eric Garner , also black, in 2014.
In a passionate speech, Bernice King, the youngest daughter of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., begged people to return home after more than 1,000 protesters marched to the State Capitol since the Centennial Olympic Park, blocking traffic and an interstate highway along the way.
“The only way to get what we really want is through non-violence,” said Bernice King in his father’s hometown. “Let’s do this in a non-violent manner to deal with the evil of our time.”
King was assassinated in 1968, a year after race riots had spread to many large cities.
The Atlanta demonstration became chaotic and at times violent. Fires were burning in downtown Atlanta near the CNN Center, headquarters of the network.
At least one police car was burnt down among several vehicles. Windows were broken in the CNN building, as were store fronts. The police pushed the crowd away, but threw bottles at the police.
Hundreds of protesters challenged 8 p.m. curfew to assemble in the streets around a police station burnt down the previous night.
“We are here because we, as a generation, realize that things have to change,” said a walker, Paul Selman, a 25-year-old black man who had just graduated in English from the State of Minnesota. “We need peace.”
Peter McMahon, 26, a resident of the area around the police station and owner of two neighboring properties, said: “This is my generation and these are the people I went to school with,” adding: ” It’s no surprise. I lost good friends because of this Black Lives Matter shit. “
Hundreds of people in the auto capital joined a “March Against Police Brutality” in the late afternoon outside Detroit’s public security headquarters. Many chanted “No justice, no peace”. Some carried signs that read “Stop the police violence” and “I will not stop shouting until everyone can breathe.”
A 19-year-old male protester in the city was shot dead Friday evening by a suspect who stopped in front of protesters in a sport utility vehicle and fired shots into the crowd, then fled, reported the Detroit Free Press and other local media. The police could not be immediately contacted for comment.
Denver experienced a second day of protests after hundreds of people marched peacefully through downtown to demand justice for Floyd.
Hundreds of people gathered on Friday for a demonstration organized by the Black Lives Matter group at the town hall. Crowds poured out onto the entrance ramp to Interstate 45 near downtown, chanting “I can’t breathe” and “No justice, no peace”.
After a night of violence in which at least seven people were killed, Kentucky city police have prepared for further protests over the murder of Floyd and several others, such as police-killed Breonna Taylor at his Louisville home in March.