Rally in Boston to call for action on police killing cases

Massachusetts

A chain portrait of George Floyd is part of the memorial for him, Wednesday, May 27, 2020, near the site of the arrest of Floyd who died in police custody Monday night in Minneapolis after video shared online by a bystander showed a white officer kneeling on his neck during his arrest as he pleaded that he couldn’t breathe. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

BOSTON (AP) — Supporters of Massachusetts families whose loved ones have been killed by police are holding a rally and march in Boston on Saturday as part of a national day of action.

Mass Action Against Police Brutality, a local advocacy group, said it’s organizing a 1 p.m. gathering in Peters Park in the city’s South End neighborhood.

The organization said similar events are taking place in at least 17 other states on Saturday, including California, New York, Ohio, Texas, Florida and Georgia.

The rallies are timed just ahead of the expected March 8 start of the trial of the former police officer, Derek Chauvin, charged in the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last year.

Floyd, a Black man, died May 25 after Chauvin, who is white, pressed his knee against Floyd’s neck while Floyd was held face-down on the ground handcuffed and saying he couldn’t breathe, and he eventually grew still.

Body camera footage indicates Chauvin’s knee was on Floyd’s neck for about nine minutes. Floyd was later pronounced dead at a hospital. Chauvin is charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter.

Mass Action Against Police Brutality says the rallies are the next step in a series of “family-first events and activities” aimed at underscoring the central demands of the families: prosecuting police officers and reopening police brutality cases.

Among the local cases the organization wants reopened are the killings by police of DJ Henry, Eurie Stamps, Malcolm Gracia, Burrell Ramsey-White, Ross Batista, Usaamah Rahim, Terrence Coleman, and Juston Root.

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