Protesters march on Carbondale, IL chanting 'black lives matter' - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Protesters march on Carbondale, IL chanting 'black lives matter'

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) -

Around 50 protesters marched through the streets of Carbondale Friday night in memory of lives lost in police shootings.

The group could be heard as far North as East Willow Street, and as far south as college and Illinois streets in Carbondale chanting things like “No Justice no peace, No racist Police.”

“It’s hurtful to even know that these events are even happening in 2016.” Said protester Alex Hopkins after the March. “At the end of the day, police officers are here to protect us. We just need to weed out the ones that think otherwise.”

The group carried a sign with pictures and hometowns of multiple black individuals they say were killed in the United states in police shootings in 2016.

Many referenced a Facebook video that went viral the same week of a 32 year old black man dying in his car after allegedly being shot by a police officer.

“People want to show their support to the folks that are hurting right now.” Hopkins explained.

The night after that video surfaced, at least 10 police officers were shot by snipers in Dallas TX, five of whom were pronounced dead.

Authorities report one of the alleged gunman voiced intent for targeting white police officers.

“It’s absolutely wrong. Nobody should have to die.” Hopkins continued, echoed by a fellow anonymous protester.

“We feel sorry for the innocent cops that got killed. But look how many of us got killed that were innocent!”

The group carried a sign with pictures and hometowns of multiple black individuals they say were killed in the United states in police shootings in 2016.

Carbondale Protesters said one of the points they wanted to convey was that despite Thursday’s killings in Dallas; their cause was still being fought by many in  peaceful manner.

“People don’t ever see nothing but the negatives and the bad things.” The Anonymous protester said. “So  it was good for us to come together in unity to show that there’s still good people out here.”

“Violence isn’t going to change anything that happened.” Hopkins said. “The folks that were killed by law enforcement, they’re gone, and violence is not going to solve it”

Carbondale police were monitoring the protest but say they did little more than direct traffic for the protesters.

An officer later told Heartland News over the phone there was at no time any friction between police and the crowd, and he was thankful to serve in a country where people could legally and safely voice their opinion.

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