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SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake City residents made their presence known among the national protests over the death of George Floyd.
Protestors met at 900 South and State Street in downtown Salt Lake City on Friday night for a peaceful protest, in contrast with the sometimes violent protests spreading to cities across the country following the death of an African American in police custody in Minneapolis on Monday.
"In the state of Utah, I believe it's going like it is everywhere in the nation," said Mac Allred, protest participant.
The protest began at 8 p.m. Friday night and ended shortly after 9:30 with around 150-200 people at its peak. Protestors held banners saying "Justice for George Floyd," "Stop Police Brutality" and "Counselors Not Cops" at each corner of the intersection, while others held signs simply stating "Black Lives Matter" with matching chants. Demonstrators left following a moment of silence for Floyd, who died Monday after an officer put his knee on his head and neck area. Officer Derek Chauvin, 44, was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter on Friday.
"The problems happening in Minneapolis, Minnesota, are happening nationwide, and we want to make sure people understand that that's not an isolated problem," said Allred.
Southwest Save the Kids organized the protest on Facebook. The group encouraged participants to maintain social distancing and wear masks amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additional protests have been organized for Saturday. Utah Against Police Brutality has organized a car-caravan protest "National Day of Protest" Saturday starting at the parking lot near Denver St. and 5th South in Salt Lake City at 11 a.m. "Take a Knee on Washington Blvd" has 1,400 interested participants on Facebook and will meet at the Ogden/Weber Municipal building at 2 p.m.
Contributing: Jacob Klopfenstein, KSL.com