Hundreds of Supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement gathered in front of Union Station in Los Angeles in solidarity with Breonna Taylor Wednesday night.
Announced Wednesday morning, the charges that were handed down by a grand jury and the ultimate release of former police detective Brett Hankinson on bail sparked a public outcry in Louisville, Kentucky and in other cities across the United States.
Charged with wanton endangerment of Taylor’s neighbors, Hankinson faces no direct repercussions for his involvement in the shooting of the 26-year-old. None of the other officers involved have been charged.
In Los Angeles, a chapter of Black Lives Matter hosted speakers in front of city hall Wednesday evening for a pre-planned event calling for the removal of district attorney Jackie Lacey. Efforts to remove Lacey have been mobilized for some time, but with the recent police killings and action of Los Angeles Sheriff’s Deputies, the push has gotten stronger.
Afterwards, demonstrators walked to Father Serra Park in front of Union Station to march in solidarity for the wrongful death of Breonna Taylor.
Protesters chanted her name and called for justice in relation to the officers involved in Taylor’s case.
Dominique Stockley, a protester and supporter for the BLM movement, said she felt anxious with the news that became public today.
“When the news came out this morning, I can’t say I was surprised but I was definitely devastated,” Stockley said. “In my opinion there were absolutely no charges, and I think that it’s incredibly disappointing that a set of walls got more justice than Breonna Taylor did, I think that [Breonna Taylor] was failed tremendously.”
The rally then evolved into a march that traveled from Union Station to Downtown Los Angeles. Members of the National Lawyers Guild, who act as legal observers and documentarians, were there to observe and collect evidence, should participants need their assistance in the case of being arrested or apprehended by police.
Dorian Cohen, a lifelong protester, said she feels the only thing she can do now is to stand with her community and try to effect change at a smaller level.
“I always vote, though I don’t have faith in the system,” Cohen said. “I think that the two parties that we have are just kind of two votes of the same thing. I will absolutely be voting, I’m trying to learn to be better with local offices, so that I can have some impact on my communities.”