Black Lives Matter Protests in Connecticut Following Police Shootings

Demonstrators gathered outside All Souls Unitarian Church in New London on Thursday evening behind a Black Lives Matter banner in response to the recent police shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.

The videos show Sterling, from Louisiana, and Castile, from Minnesota, during seperate incidents, being shot several times by police officers. 

Don Wilson, of the New London NAACP, said what's shown in the videos shouldn't be happening anywhere in America.

"When you look at these videos, you see the actions of police officers and it's almost as if the individuals they're dealing with aren't human, they're not citizens. We're all citizens here," Wilson said.

In a video posted on Wednesday, Sterling is seen being held on the ground by police outside a Louisiana convenience store before being shot several times as he laid face down on the ground with officers kneeling on his back. 

On Wednesday, Castile was fatally shot in front of his 4-year-old daughter and girlfriend in a St. Paul suburb of Falcon Heights during a traffic stop for a broken taillight.

One of the families at the New London demonstration came because a woman wants her kids to grow up in a world where what happened to the men are unacceptable.

"My heart's breaking with everybody else's. And you want to show up, you want to do something so for me, this is my congregation, but it's also, no matter where we were meeting, what we were doing, we would show up to say this is not OK for us," Karen Mangiacotti said.

Mayor Michael Passero, of New London, appeared, saying he wanted to support the community.

He echoed the statement early in the day from the mayor of New Haven, Toni Harp, who said every mayor dreads a comparable incident.

A rally and vigil is planned for the New Haven Green at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.

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