Peaceful protest against racism fills Decatur Square

Credit: Ty Tagami/AJC

Credit: Ty Tagami/AJC

Protesters gathered for a peaceful demonstration in downtown Decatur on Wednesday afternoon to speak out against racism and police brutality.

Similar protests have cropped up in downtown Atlanta and around the metro area since last Friday. More demonstrations are planned for downtown on Wednesday evening.

The protest in Decatur started around 3 p.m. Wednesday in Decatur Square.

Protesters chanted “Black Lives Matter,” fists pumping into the air. They then walked slowly to the street for a march, chanting, "No justice, no peace." Some adults brought little kids with them.

The Decatur Police Department was aware of the event, department spokesman Sgt. John Bender said.

“The department will be working the event and ensuring the safety and rights of those involved are protected,” Bender said earlier Wednesday.

Several other Georgia cities have already seen large crowds show up in protest of police brutality and racism in the wake of the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and Ahmaud Arbery in Brunswick.

The Decatur community was recently roiled after a white student made a video about shooting black people. It was at least the third racist video to emerge online in a month from the city of 25,000, challenging the city's reputation for progressive politics and cordial race relations

A group of nearly 100 gathered around the steps of Decatur City Hall last week to speak out against the video. Black student leaders at Decatur High School say the white student behind the video should be expelled.

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