A tree lighting ceremony in Seattle, WA, was interrupted by a ‘Black Lives Matter’ protest on Friday, resulting in the arrest of five people. The participants were protesting Monday’s grand jury decision not to indict Ferguson, MO, police officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown.
The rally began when protesters arrived at Seattle’s Westlake Mall on Friday afternoon. After entering the mall, those participating in the demonstration began shouting “no justice, no peace,” and soon after went to another nearby mall to continue their protest. During protests at the Pacific Place Mall, one individual was arrested after reportedly kicking a police officer’s bicycle. Officers allegedly used pepper spray on demonstrators at one point, resulting in the arrest of two more people.
After the Pacific Place Mall protest, the group returned to the Westlake Mall and began to chant and shout in the middle of a tree lighting ceremony. According to KIRO 7 News, two additional people were arrested at the site of the tree lighting for assaulting police.
According to reports, security at the Westlake Mall warned customers that the mall was not safe to remain in when the protesters were inside. Many protesters reportedly climbed onto equipment that was being used for the tree lighting, and parents in attendance told KIRO 7 News that their children were “frightened by the protest.”
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Seattle Mayor Ed Murray responded to the controversial demonstrations following the arrests.
“While I understand the hurt and frustration that our city has experienced in the past days, this is a city that respects the rule of law,” Murray said in a statement. “I support the First Amendment rights of protestors, but violence against property or police officers will not be tolerated in our city.”
The rally in Seattle was just one of countless throughout the nation that have occurred on a daily basis since Monday’s decision in Ferguson.
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Source: KIRO 7 News / Photo Credit: rawstory.com