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4:32 PM: According to a report from Bay City news, a “large group” of protesters have rallied in front of an Oakland barbershop that was owned by Derrick Jones, the unarmed man fatally shot by police on Monday night after officers responded to a report of a domestic dispute, before taking to the streets of Oakland.
Ronald Cruz, spokesperson for civil rights group BAMN, which organized the protest told BCN that family members of Jones and Oscar Grant have joined the demonstration at 5815 Bancroft Way (near 58th Ave.) before marching to the Fruitvale BART station, the scene of Grant’s fatal shooting.
Jones’ family were already known by the police because they stood up and won against Oakland police brutality. When the police assaulted and brutalized members of his family several years ago, they sued against the police and won, getting two police officers fired. If the police get away with killing Derrick Jones, any family that stands up against police brutality in the future will be afraid that their lives will be endangered. We cannot let that happen.
According to broadcast reports, the demonstration has remained peaceful. At publication time, the protesters (looks like there are about 30-40 people, from the helicopter footage I’ve seen) are walking down International Blvd toward the BART station.
5:15 PM: The protest, which numbers, according to KRON4, about 100 people, has reached the Fruitvale BART station.
Though the protest remains peaceful, shortly after they arrived, BART closed the station, preventing the protesters from entering. According to an alert sent by BART, “There is a station closure at Fruitvale on the Fremont Line due to a civil disturbance.”
The police presence around the demonstration, says KRON, has increased to about 40 officers,
6:08 PM: The Fruitvale BART station remains closed, and the protesters remain outside the closed gates, with several protesters getting up and speaking to the group.
BARt and Oakland police appear out in force, with many of them clad in full riot gear.
According to KRON4 broadcast, Cephus Johnson, the uncle of Oscar Grant, who spoke at the rally in front of Jones’ barbershop, says that BART’s decision to close this station has strengthened their resolve to have future protests at BART station, “until something changes in the city of Oakland.”
6:17 PM: BART spokesperson Linton Johnson tells KRON4 broadcast that long before the protest that BART had made the decision to close the station if “the protest made it there.” The reason? “Concern that they might rush the platform or injure themselves in other ways.”
The number of protesters has dwindled to about 40, says KTVU broadcast. Johnson says the station will remain closed as long as necessary, and says a bus bridge has been established to shuttle Fruitvale passengers to and from BART.
6:22 PM: According to reports, the Fruitvale BART station’s been reopened.