Baltimore Protesters Demand Justice for Black Victims of US Police Brutality

Baltimore Protesters Demand Justice for Black Victims of US Police Brutality

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Protesters gathered outside the Baltimore Circuit Court in the US to demand justice for Freddie Gray and other people who have suffered from police violence.

The event was the weekly "West Wednesday" rally, organized Wednesday evening because of the death of Tyrone West, 44, in July 2013 after Baltimore police tackled and handcuffed him during a traffic stop.

An autopsy blamed a heart condition aggravated by the struggle and hot weather. An internal review board cleared officers of using excessive force, but said they "made several tactical errors that may have extended the length of the physical encounter, compromised officer safety, and potentially aggravated the situation."

Demonstrators held signs reading, "Justice 4 Tyrone West" and "We Know What You Did." Another read, "Tyrone West Baltimore's Ferguson," according to the Associated Press. 

But people also sought justice for Gray, who died in April after suffering a severe spinal injury in police custody. Six officers have been charged in his arrest and death. Signs at the protest showed Gray's picture and said, "No Justice No Peace."

Sharon Black, a protest organizer, said they had won a small but significant victory Wednesday, because the cases against the six officers were not dismissed. She urged protesters to return next week when a judge is to consider requests to move the trials out of the city.

"We have to keep pressing on," Black said.

Some of the dozens of speakers asked police officers monitoring the protest why they weren't out fighting crime.

After an hour-long protest at the courthouse, protesters marched to the front of nearby City Hall, chanting: "All night, all day, we will fight for Freddie Gray."


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