Rochester’s religious elders on Sunday night’s Daniel Prude protest

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The calls for police reform following the death of Daniel Prude remain loud in Rochester Monday night.

For the sixth night in a row, there is a planned protest.

Sunday night was the first time protesters and police did not clash, and that may have been because there was a shield of the city’s religious elders between them.

News10NBC Investigative Reporter Jennifer Lewke spoke to Rev. Myra Brown of Spiritus Christi Church, who came up with the idea to have the city’s elders stand between the protestors and the police.

Rev. Brown: "I appreciate that the city worked with me to stand down right, to have a night of reprieve but we need so much more. We need real changes. Real changes in the structure of policing and right now we don’t have that yet and if we don’t get that, we might get more Daniel Prudes."

Lewke: "Are you asking the elders to continue coming every night? Are you asking the police to just reinforce what they did last night without the elders having to be there? How do you see this moving forward?”

Rev. Brown: “I’m asking for the City of Rochester to guarantee that people can be safe and not harmed."

Another elder who participated spoke with News10NBC Sunday night. Rev. Dr. Rickey B. Harvey from Mt. Olivet Baptist Church marched with the protestors from Jefferson Avenue.

"They came to hear the message, they came to be heard, they came to be seen, they came to represent Daniel Prude and that’s what was taking place in the city, over on Jefferson and the march was a very peaceful march," Rev. Dr. Harvey said.

He says it was good the elders were there because when they got to the public safety building, "There were some agitators there who are working hard to agitate the Rochester Police Department and I would say thank you tonight for their patience and their own suffering and for really not yielding to temptation because there was a lot of taunting," Rev. Dr. Harvey said.

In a statement, Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren praised both the protesters and the police department for keeping the peace Sunday night.