Protesters gather on 2-month anniversary of violent protests in OKC, demanding more change

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Two months after peaceful protests turned violent in Oklahoma City, more protesters gathered in the same place Friday night.

On May 31, protesters gathered at NW 23rd and Classen to protest the death of Minneapolis man, George Floyd.

“We were silenced that night,” said Adriana Laws, one of the leaders of the protest.

Friday night, protestors started at NW 23rd and Classen and ended up near Oklahoma City Police Department Headquarters.

The group was not led by Oklahoma City Black Lives Matter, but instead by four different groups, including Whites Against Racism and Red State Revolt. These groups protested with their own demands, including that all police officers be equipped with body cams with video made easily available to the public.

“We are tired of police brutality. To see that the Police Department and also the sheriff’s deputies were out there in full riot gear, and they had armored vehicles as well, and they were meeting peaceful protesters with violence, that’s just kind of a smack in the face,” said Duron Wise, one of the protesters.

“We haven’t seen justice, and we all should know by now that justice delayed is justice denied,” said Noah, another protester.

The groups also demanded better conditions at the Oklahoma County Detention Center.

“You have peaceful protesters that are being sent in there with a raging pandemic, and we also have massive rats that are in there…we have a rat infestation. Not only that, but we also have bedbugs,” said Wise.

Protestors also want change from Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater, who charged some of the protesters from the May 31st protest with terrorism.

“He is trying to silence all of us who have the bravery to use our first amendment rights,” said Noah.

KFOR reached out to Prater for comment, but did not receive a response. Prater did however offer a comment earlier in the week, saying the following:

“I draw a clear distinction between protected free speech and criminal conduct. I will continue to prosecute those who violate the laws created to protect the innocent citizens of Oklahoma County. I am not surprised that criminal defendants don’t like that. The criminal justice system provides a venue for the litigation of criminal cases. It’s called a courtroom. I will litigate these cases in an Oklahoma County courtroom, not on social media or through the press.”

District Attorney David Prater

“We’re gonna continue to be here and be heard,” said Laws.

“It’s not just a black or white [issue], not Democrat or Republican. It’s something we can all get behind,” said Wise.

KFOR also reached out to the Oklahoma County Jail Trust and the Oklahoma City Police Department for a response regarding these claims. Neither offered a statement.

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