Demonstrators gather near police headquarters Downtown, one of 3 protests planned

A handful of demonstrators began to gather near Long Beach Police Department headquarters in Downtown, one of at least three protests planned on Saturday.

One organizer of the Downtown protest said other participants are coming from another demonstration in Los Angeles. The group plans to walk up Pacific Avenue to the Wardlow Blue Line station, where Cesar Rodriguez, 23, died a year ago after tumbling into the pathway of an oncoming train when an officer tried to stop him from running away during a fare evasion stop.

“He was my only boy,” Rosa Moreno, Rodriguez’ mother, said to the crowd. “For $1.75, why couldn’t they forgive him?”

Black Lives Matter has called on the District Attorney to press charges against the officer, but police said this week the officer has been cleared of any criminal wrongdoing.

 

Police said earlier on Saturday that they were aware of at least three planned demonstrations on Saturday, including the march planned over the death of Rodriguez. Another gathering was held earlier in the day at Bluff Park; it wasn’t clear where the third demonstration was being held.

Three months after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Kenosha, Wisconsin has became the latest flashpoint with the police shooting of Jacob Blake, apparently in the back, as he leaned into his SUV while his three children sat in the vehicle.

Los Angeles has seen large protests this week, including reports of vandals burning what appeared to be an American flag near the Los Angeles Police Departments’s Van Nuys stations late Friday night.

Hundreds of people are also expected to hold processions through East Los Angeles today to mark the 50th anniversary of the Chicano Moratorium March, a protest against the disproportionate impact of the Vietnam War on the Mexican-American community.

At least three parades—involving marchers, demonstrators in vehicles and participants in hundreds of classic cars—are expected to descend on Whittier Boulevard and make their way to Ruben Salazar Park, where a mass rally is planned.

City News Service contributed to this report. 

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