Demonstrators in New Haven Speak Out Against Fatal Police Shootings of Black Men

New Haven Police plan to have a strong presence at the Black Lives Matter rally Friday evening to keep both demonstrators and their own officers safe.

Earlier in the afternoon, another group, The Narrative Project, peacefully protested on the New Haven Green in what they called a “Solidarity Die-In.”

While lying down on the ground, the group of more than two dozen demonstrators recited names of black men killed by police officers, including Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.

Videos of these two officer involved shootings spread on social media and have sparked protests nationwide, including the peaceful march Thursday night in Dallas before a gunman opened fire, killing five police officers and injuring seven more.

“When they shot those two innocent men, they shot a part of my heart because I am raising black boys,” said Amelia Sherwood before taking part in the die-in.

Chris Harrington also participated in the demonstration. His wife is a probation officer.

“From a personal perspective, I worry about my wife every day, she wears a bulletproof vest,” he said reacting to the attack on officers in Dallas. “It scares me, that that could be the response and that’s not the response that we want.”

Yale University School of Drama students covered a sidewalk on campus with chalk messages Friday afternoon.

“There are a lot of things being chalked,” graduate student Rachel Shuey said. “Black lives matter, say their names, there are so many names other the names form this week,”

Following the mass shooting attack during a similar protest in Dallas, New Haven Police say they will have ample personnel at Friday evening’s rally on the Green.

“We are basically going to continue making sure our officers are paired up,” Assistant Chief of Police Anthony Campbell said, “we have a detail for the protest that is scheduled for tonight.”

The Black Lives Matter New Haven rally and vigil for Sterling and Castile happened at 7:30 pm on Friday.  

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