Birmingham residents hold peaceful rally for Ferguson

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – Residents of Birmingham joined thousands across the country for a peaceful vigil in remembrance of Michael Brown.

Nearly 50 people gathered at Kelley Ingram Park Thursday to participate in a National Moment of Silence.

Organizer, Jennifer Murray says she felt compelled to get involved after seeing posts on Twitter about gatherings in others states.

“I felt like it would be a travesty if Birmingham didn’t join in, given it’s civil rights history…a mother watched her son bleed in the street. If you’re a human you couldn’t help but feel. You had to feel something about that,” said Murray.

The shooting of an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Missouri and police response to protests has struck a cord with many.

“Violating person individual liberties and not allowing people to peacefully protest without being disbursed with tear gas and other fear tactics was just really disturbing for me, said Chris Gamboa.

“It scares me when I think about the case of Trayvon Martin, the case of Mike Brown. I can’t help but think, is that me? Could that be me?,” said Joshua Raby, who also helped organize the rally.

One mother says, seeing what’s happening in Ferguson concerns her.

“No one wants to see this happen to their child, even though I feel privileged that I worried about it a lot less than many mothers do,” said Helen Rivas.

A second rally was held at Linn Park.

18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by a police officer on Aug. 9.

Police say Brown was shot after an officer encountered him and another man on the street. They say one of the men pushed the officer into his squad car, then physically assaulted him in the vehicle and struggled with the officer over the officer’s weapon.

At least one shot was fired inside the car before the struggle spilled onto the street, where Brown was shot multiple times, according to police.

Witnesses say the officer fired on Brown as he tried to run away. After being shot again, Brown turned toward the officer at distance with his hands in the air and the officer fired several more shots.



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