All information in this article was due to the incredible live coverage from Al Robinson, owner/editor of My Left Nutmeg. To watch his entire live stream, please click here.
DANBURY, CT—Danbury’s peaceful protest began with a crowd gathered in front of the Danbury Police Department (DPD) shouting the names of victims of police brutality and soon turned into chants of “F**k the police.” After about five minutes of chanting, one of the leaders invited the crowd to take a knee out of respect for the death of George Floyd.
“Let me speak, I’ve earned that. I don’t need to prove [inaudible], I wear it every day,” one of the speakers said. “Let the Chief speak.”
Danbury Police Chief Patrick Ridenhour addressed the crowd by saying he has been doing everything he can to address racial tensions because “it’s not right,” and “maybe this time will be different.”
While speaking, someone in the crowd interrupted the Police Chief yelling, “I am the victim of police brutality.” Another asked the question about what sort of diversity training the police does which was answered as “eight hours, every couple of years.”
Chief Ridenhour acknowledged that the diversity training protocols that are in place are not enough and they need to be changed.
As tensions grew, the shouts from the crowd made it difficult to hear the police chief. Mayor Mark Boughton also attempted to address the crowd, however, someone grabbed his microphone, according to Al Robinson of My Left Nutmeg, and the crowd and viewers were unable to hear what he had to say.
After about 20 minutes, the protesters split into two groups—one walking to the Danbury Public Library, and the other going to the highway.
The protesters who shouted, “Black Lives Matter” and “No justice, no peace” assembled on the highway, causing it to be temporarily shut down on I-84 at Exit 5. Police from Newtown, Danbury, and State Police kept control of the crowd and no one was hurt.
Danbury Police Sgt. John Krupinsky said, “Working together can always get things done.”
Robinson said for the most part people were peacefully demonstrating and expressing their frustration on the lives lost due to past incidents of police brutality. He ended his live stream by saying:
“We shouldn’t be here are looking for anything to pop off or anything violent. We should be here honoring why people are here in the first place—because a black man was murdered in broad daylight by the police again and enough is enough. Enough has been enough for a long time.”
The protest was organized by Solomon James and the Western CT Democratic Socialists.
Photo credit: Screenshot from Al Robinson’s Live video posted on My Left Nutmeg
To watch his entire live stream, please click here.