Rochester citizens stand up against police brutality

Created: 08/14/2014 11:26 PM WHEC.com

Dozens of people gathered at Washington Square Park for a vigil on Thursday night to take a stand against police brutality and remember those who have died because of it.

They said the recent events in Ferguson, Missouri brought them together to say they have had enough.

"These are people who are supposed to be controlling our neighborhoods, keeping our neighborhoods safe but in fact they are treating our citizens as enemies," said Kaelyn Rich.

There was a nationwide moment of silence at 7:20 on Thursday night for the lives lost due to police brutality, including 18-year-old Michael Brown who was allegedly killed by Ferguson police. Rochester citizens honored this moment of silence at Washington Square Park.

Those in attendance said even though it didn't happen in Rochester, they won't stand idle.

"Literally hundreds of documented incidents of police using military equipment to deal with regular everyday citizens. In fact, 80% of SWAT deployments from 2011-2012 were for the serving of warrants," said Rich.

Kelly Scott, one of the organizers of the vigil, said, "This is pretty much building the foundation of change. We would like to keep this going."

Organizers said this isn't about being against police, but learning to work together.

"What we would like to see is a change in the way the police interact with our community. They are here to serve and protect but we also want to foster trust," said Scott.

If you want to learn more about the vigil, email Tubieandthetubes@hotmail.com.

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