NORTH MIAMI, FLA. (WSVN) - Members of the Black Lives Matter movement are protesting for justice days after an unarmed man was shot while trying to protect an autistic patient.
Protesters out in the street wore black clothing and held up signs and moved inside the North Miami Police Department in a peaceful manner. Some wrote written complaints and submitted them to the police department.
“The more that we’re out here, the more people are talking about it, the more people are not ignoring the issues,” said protester Emmanuella Enemor. “We’re gonna keep disrupting people’s day because people need to care about this.”
About 50 people showed up with the hope of sending a strong message to the community in the wake of the police-involved shooting that occurred last Monday.
North Miami Police responded to a call about a man with a gun but arrived to find a man with autism who was holding a toy truck and his specialist Charles Kinsey.
In cellphone video, Kinsey could be seen with his hands in the air and trying to explain the situation to police.
“I was more worried about him than myself,” Kinsey said in an interview with 7News. “I’m looking at, as long as I got my hands up, they’re not gonna shoot me.”
During that encounter, he was shot in the leg.
“That’s why we’re here,” said protester Cassia Laham, “to see justice for victims of police brutality.”
Over the weekend, the family of the autistic man demanded answers from police. “Own up to your mistakes,” his sister, Miriam Rios said, “Let people know that you’re trying to change.”
The officer who fired his weapon, Jonathan Aledda, and his commander are both are on administrative leave while the FDLE investigates the shooting.
Meanwhile, police said they are listening to the community. “We live in America, and this is one of our rights, and we do not want to take that right away,” said North Miami Police Officer Natalie Buissereth. “If they want to share what they feel, we’ve been answering their phone calls. We’ve been receiving all the messages. We’ve actually started transcribing the messages, and we’re gonna post those as well, so they know that we are listening. We’re not turning our backs. We are listening.”
North Miami is expected to have a town hall meeting Tuesday at the Griffing Community Center at 6:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend and share their concerns in regard to the shooting.
The city has also set up a hotline for residents who have concerns about the shooting. If you’d like to voice your concern, call 305-902-6745.
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