Deray McKesson, one of the most prominent activists in the Black Lives Matter movement, was arrested in Baton Rouge on Saturday during a demonstration in solidarity with residents furious over the recent death of Alton Sterling. The disturbing footage of Sterling’s tragic death at the hands of two police has since gone viral, bringing the harsh reality of police brutality to America’s living room.
Deray was using his smartphone to live-stream the ongoing protests when police rushed in and forcibly despersed the crowds. As he and 8 other protesters continued marching, an officer approached Deray to inform him that he had been “flagged” and that he would be arrested if he left the sidewalk again. Moments later, witnesses say two officers forcefully arrested him.
Deray was charged with obstructing a highway of commerce, but wasn’t the only protestor to be taken into custody. A Baton Rouge parish prison official confirmed to The Washington Post that more than 120 people were arrested from multiple protest sites.
Here’s some of the footage Deray was able to tweet prior to the arrests:
Again, the police provoke protestors for no reason. #BatonRouge https://t.co/wCLQZKeRUI
— deray mckesson (@deray) July 10, 2016
Fellow Black Lives Matter activist Johnetta Elzie has been live tweeting as she communicates with Deray from inside the jail, and also shared a link where you can donate to help bail the Baton Rouge protestors out of jail.
National Lawyers Guild created a bail fund for protesters today. Here's the link: https://t.co/Q1cYcInxH1 https://t.co/O6cgmYm9Hq
— Johnetta Elzie (@Nettaaaaaaaa) July 10, 2016
As the news rolls in, we’re also hearing that about 100 protestors have also been arrested in Minnesota following the murder of Philando Castile. More updates to come as the story develops.