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Hundreds of protesters march to DNC in Milwaukee

Posted at 9:25 PM, Aug 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-20 23:43:17-04

MILWAUKEE — Hundreds of protesters marched to the site of the Democratic National Convention in downtown Milwaukee Thursday night to demand justice for Black men who have been killed by police.

The group remained peaceful from the moment they started marching, but a confrontation with counter-protesters beforehand led to a tense scene near the intersection of State and Water Street with police officers surrounding the area.

Protesters carried a large banner reading ‘We can’t breathe’ through downtown Milwaukee to send a message to the leaders of the DNC.

“What’s happening with the DNC right now is they aren’t listening to the people,” said protester Ulysses Lagar.

It was an effort to draw attention on a national stage to their demands for racial equality.

“We don’t hear any of them inviting any of the families of the victims into the democratic convention,” said protester Pat Gowens.

Before the group started marching, several parents of men killed at the hands of police begged for justice at Red Arrow Park including the father of Joel Acevedo.

“We want the 911 call released and we want the body cam released,” said Joel’s father Jose Acevedo. “I saw it for myself as well as my attorney. We said back then that it was disturbing and it is disturbing,”

But while families were speaking late Thursday afternoon, a group of counter-protesters who claimed to be supporters of President Trump and law enforcement used megaphones to voice their opposition.

Witnesses said an argument between the two groups soon followed. Officers mounted on horses arrived in a matter of minutes leading to a separate confrontation between protesters and police. Many protesters including activist Vaun Mayes were frustrated by the police response.

“This situation could have been de-escalated and as you see, this isn’t a de-escalation, this is a waste of taxpayers’ money for something that could have been defused by them,” Mayes said.

Nearly a hundred officers lined the street before things calmed down and the peaceful gathering resumed.

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