Toms River police chief leads the way in peaceful protest honoring George Floyd

A group of around 150 people started the rally at Route 37, making their way to the Toms River courthouse along Washington Street.

News 12 Staff

Jun 2, 2020, 4:06 PM

Updated 1,456 days ago

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A group of around 150 people started the rally at Route 37, making their way to the Toms River courthouse along Washington Street.
“My goal was love, peace and equality, unity – and for us to remain peaceful,” said participant Katrina Garcia.
The protesters marched along with the Toms River Police Department to denounce police brutality.
“We had a sign made up, ‘We are with you,’” said Chief Mitch Little. “We feel the same as everybody else here.”
Floyd died last week after a confrontation with Minneapolis police. One officer was seen on video with his knee on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes, even after Floyd appeared to pass out. Several other officers were seen in the video standing by while it happened. The kneeling officer has been charged with murder.
Little said that “good police officers” were outraged by what happened in Minnesota.
“We watched that video of George Floyd, and we get physically sick,” Little said.
Photos: Protests from Around New Jersey
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The protesters said that it was great that the police department marched along with them.
“They were smiling. They were hugging people. Just so pleased with the Toms River Police Department,” said one of the protesters.
It was not the same situation in Asbury Park Monday evening. Following a peaceful protest outside the police station, there were several arrests – including the arrest of an Asbury Park Press journalist – for people breaking the 8 p.m. curfew. Protests in Trenton and Atlantic City on Sunday also ended with arrests and looting.
Those who marched in Toms River continued to push their message along Route 37, but never stopped traffic. They said that they just wanted to be heard.
"We only have our voices …and if this is all I can do to help out my brothers and sisters, then I'll use my voice,” said Nina Myriah Sheppard, of Lakehurst.
Tuesday’s rally was one of several taking place across the state.


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