Protest in Baltimore against appointment of new police commissioner
A group of African-American demonstrators have taken to the streets of Baltimore, Maryland to protest against police brutality and the appointment of a new white police commissioner.
After the Baltimore City Council voted to confirm Kevin Davis as commissioner of the Baltimore Police Department on Monday, protesters briefly disrupted the proceedings before being escorted outside the council chambers by police.
The demonstrators converged with other protesters outside and marched toward Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, with groups of police following them and issuing warnings for them to get onto the sidewalk.
"Kevin Davis does not at all have any of our interests at heart," Makayla Gilliam-Price, a 17-year-old founder of the group City Bloc, told the crowd during an impassioned speech. "I am extremely fed up, and this will not be the end."
The protest followed another last week, in which 16 protesters were arrested after staging a sit-in inside of Baltimore City Hall to disrupt a hearing on the appointment of Davis.
Davis was appointed as Baltimore's interim police commissioner in July after the previous commissioner, Anthony Batts, was fired following a rapid rise in murder rates and days of racially-fueled protests and riots in April over the death of Freddie Gray in police custody.
Gray, a 25-year-old unarmed black man, died on April 19, a week after his encounter with 6 officers that left him with grave spinal injuries.
Large-scale protests have been held across the US after a series of high-profile incidents of white police officers killing unarmed African-American men, including Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; Tamir Rice in Cleveland, Ohio; Eric Garner in New York City and Walter Scott in North Charleston, South Carolina.