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Sat May 30, 2020, 02:47 AM

Austin protests against police brutality while grappling with own issues

As protesters and even fellow police condemn a Minneapolis officer for kneeling on the neck of a handcuffed man who pleaded for air before he died, many will gather in downtown Austin this weekend to denounce police violence, including a fatal police shooting in Southeast Austin last month.

Rallies are scheduled for noon Saturday at Austin police headquarters and at the Texas Capitol at 1 p.m. Sunday as local leaders continue to call for reform within the city’s Police Department.

While Minneapolis reels from ongoing protests, which escalated in violence Thursday night when demonstrators torched a police precinct station that had been abandoned by officers, local officials said they support the right to protest and are confident that Austin can balance safety with free speech.

Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis officer caught on video kneeling on the neck of George Floyd, was arrested Friday. Meanwhile in Austin, local prosecutors and the Texas Rangers continue to investigate the April 24 police shooting of Michael Ramos, who was later found to be unarmed.

Read more: https://www.statesman.com/news/20200529/austin-protests-against-police-brutality-while-grappling-with-own-issues

Dozens protesting George Floyd’s death in front of Austin police headquarters

About a hundred protesters denouncing police brutality and the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis this week gathered in front of the Austin Police Department’s headquarters in downtown Austin around midnight Saturday.

A line of officers wearing helmets and batons formed in front of the building and blocking the Interstate 35 service road near East Seventh Street. At one point officers clashed with demonstrators and pushed them back to the street. Demonstrators appeared to be throwing water bottles at the officers moments earlier.

Floyd died on May 25 while in police custody after former Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck while Floyd pleaded for air. Chauvin was arrested Friday and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter.

Multiple protests have sparked across the country, including in Dallas and Houston. In Atlanta, a police car was set on fire and windows were broken at CNN’s headquarters, the Associated Press reports.

Read more: https://www.statesman.com/news/20200530/dozens-protest-george-floydrsquos-death-in-front-of-austin-police-headquarters

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