A heavy police presence lines State Street near Perry Square.
Within minutes, a peaceful protest was shutdown as a precaution after last night’s destruction downtown.
Sandy Petisen, Erie resident says, “I wanted to go protest peacefully. I don’t understand why I’m not allowed to do that. I thought that was my right. I understand people get out of control, but I don’t.”
Elvis Andromeda Maryshire, Organizer of the Peaceful Protest tells us this protest was to raise awareness of what happened to George Floyd in a positive manner.
“This is not to condone violence. This is not about violence. It is about police brutality. You don’t sell violence with more violence,” Andromeda added.
Maryshine tells us on Sunday afternoon, Michael Outlaw, Community Liaison for the City of Erie said the protest could occur in a positive manner.
After twenty minutes in Perry Square, protestors were told to vacate the city or they would be arrested.
“We wanted a peaceful sit in, to have a safe space where if folks wanted to go about any personal injustices or their frustrations they had a safe space to share, ” Maryshine added.
Others tell us they weren’t even given the chance to exercise their rights and what would have been a peaceful protest.
Carmen Grack, Erie resident says, “We deserve a voice. We deserve a chance. It’s time to speak out on what’s going on and basically this country, the time is up. We’re sick of it. We’re done.”