A “peaceful march” is being planned in Denham Springs to protest the death of George Floyd, the African American man who recently died at the hands of Minneapolis law enforcement.
The march will begin at 6 p.m. at the L.M. Lockhart Center, located at 320 Martin Luther King Drive in Denham Springs. It will continue on Eugene Street, travel down Range Avenue to Interstate 12, and return back to the start.
Sharlecia Butler, a 2011 graduate of Denham Springs High who helped organize the march, said the march will be “a peaceful protest” and implored participants to avoid engaging in violence. Signs are welcome, Butler said, but weapons will “not be allowed.”
A police escort will accompany marchers during the rally.
“We’re going to march for rights,” Butler said. “We want to be heard and we want to show people that everyone can stick together no matter what their color is.”
The march is being held to protest what Gov. John Bel Edwards described as the “egregious” death of Floyd, who passing on on May 25 was recorded by several bystanders and has since sparked dozens of protests across the country.
In the videos, Floyd can be heard saying “I can’t breathe” and calling out for his mother before he becomes still with a police officer’s knee pressed down on his neck while others stand by.
The four Minneapolis officers who were involved in the incident have since been fired, while Derek Chauvin, the one who used his knee to hold Floyd down, was arrested and later charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
Protests in Louisiana, most notably in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, began over the weekend and continued into Monday night. More than 1,000 people gathered near New Orleans Town Hall on Monday, one day after hundreds of marchers went to the State Capitol in Baton Rouge.