Oscar-winning film-maker Quentin Tarantino joined hundreds of demonstrators waving signs, shouting through megaphones and marching along New York City’s streets to protest against police brutality on Saturday.
The protest came at a time of heightened awareness across America of the often-contentious relationship between police officers and the people they serve. New York’s mayor and police commissioner have said they are serious about enacting smart reforms to build trust between police and communities. “I’m a human being with a conscience,” said Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs director Tarantino, 52, who flew in from California for the event.
“And if you believe there’s murder going on then you need to rise up and stand up against it. I’m here to say I’m on the side of the murdered.”
The group gathered in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village neighbourhood at Washington Square Park before marching about two miles along Sixth Avenue. They walked past lines of police officers who had cordoned off a lane of traffic for them.
As they moved, those with megaphones shouted stories as others waved signs with photos of the dead, mostly young black men, and the dates and places of the incidents. The event was the last of three demonstrations by the group RiseUpOctober in New York this week. Speakers at the protest said they want to bring justice for people killed by police.
While police were present all along the protest route, the day was peaceful. No arrests were reported.
But the protest was also days after a New York police officer, Randolph Holder, was shot dead while chasing a bicycle thief. A suspect has been charged with murder and robbery.
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