The news yesterday evening was hyperventilating over a protest organized by UnOccupy Albuquerque at the courthouse and police headquarters over the mistrial of Keith Sandy and Dominque Perez for the killing of James Boyd.
Oh my, oh my. The news claimed the protest "turned violent" when protesters took to the street and blocked traffic briefly. Some of the drivers decided to proceed, in spite of people in the street blocking the way, and that resulted in some pushing and shoving between vehicles and people, and there was one report of a fight between a driver and someone in the street. There was also an instance in which a driver, plowing through people attempting to block his way, had his vehicle hit with a sign.
That was the "violence."
News people on the scene practically had the vapors.
Police eventually arrived and closed off the streets in the vicinity which dampened some of the conflict between drivers and protesters. At police headquarters, police with automatic weapons and dressed in camo fatigues guarded the building. Bless their hearts. Snipers were stationed on nearby rooftops (as had been the case during protest the night before.)
Then as darkness fell, police arrived at the courthouse (where the protest had reassembled) with their LRAD -- which I didn't see them use -- together with a half-dozen or so camoed-up and AR-15 wielding SWAT officers.
They were mocked and shouted at by protesters from ten yards away or so, most with their hands up ("don't shoot") and some on their knees. The news people watching this practically had their heart attacks at this point.
Finally, the last I saw of the protest, a line of several dozen camoed and AR carrying po-po assembled on one side of the street while the protesters formed a line on the other, and a stand off ensued.
I'll go check the news now and see if anything more happened. I suspect the protesters ultimately dispersed except for the more radical anarchist contingent, two or three of whom probably got themselves arrested.
The story, as seen on the 10pm news...
[I had to delete the teevee news segment due to an autoplay feature that I could not dismiss...fooey]
A slide show of the hoo-hah:
[Deleted the slide show as well. Still having the autoplay problems...fooey]
And a link to the news story
Just to make clear, Albuquerque has a very active police abuse protest community, but it has factions. While some are inclined to confront police, others are more nuanced and subtle. I saw both factions in play in the videos and news reports, and I recognized some of the participants from other protests I've been involved with. These are people who are dedicated to making waves and precipitating change.
The problem is and has been that when change occurs, as it has with APD, there is so little recognition of it...