Boston Leaders Hold Virtual Vigil In Response To "Violence And Racism"

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — On Friday night, protests kicked off around the U.S. in response to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Those demonstrations turned violent in several cities, including in Boston.

Starting at around 5 p.m., hundreds of protestors showed up to peacefully demonstrate at Peter's Park in Boston's South End.

Images online showed people kneeling while holding signs demanding racial justice, with some including the quote "I can't breathe," a reference to Floyd's last words.

Hours after the peaceful protests began in the South End, most of the crowd marched down Harrison Avenue. A few dozen people stayed behind outside the District 4 police station and began chanting and yelling at officers.

At one point, police pushed the crowd back and deployed pepper spray. One protestor appeared to have been hit with the spray and called out for an inhaler to help her breathe.

Protests against police brutality have been popping up across the U.S. this week, including in Atlanta, New York, Washington D.C. and Los Angeles, and more are expected this weekend.

Black Lives Matter organizers are planning another protest in Boston on Sunday, May 31st at 6:30 p.m. Crowds are planning to dress all in black and gather in Nubian Square in Roxbury to march to the State House.

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said he will host a virtual prayer vigil on Saturday, May 30th at 12:30 p.m. with Boston Police Commissioner William Gross and members of the clergy "in response to the acts of violence and racism experienced throughout the United States."

"These are truly difficult times," said Boston Mayor Marty Walsh. "And they are only made more difficult by national leaders who issue brutal threats instead of pulling us together. If there was ever a moment to acknowledge injustice, and more importantly recommit out nation to eradicating it, it's now."

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(Photo: Cat Buckler/WBZ)

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