Protesters demanding justice for John Crawford are sitting in at the Beavercreek, Ohio Police Department around the clock until the police chief meets with them.
Police chief Dennis Evers is being asked to answer for why officer Sean Williams has not been arrested, even after the surveillance footage of the shooting proves that Crawford had broken no law whatsoever when Officer Williams opened fire.
“Occupy the Beavercreek Police Department” protesters are coming in waves, but around ten of the activists who we met with say they are planning on staying over night. Others planned to return in the morning with more food and supplies.
Occupiers say they were told that Chief Evers refused to meet with them over and over until they were left with no choice but to sit in and wait for a meeting with him. After a long day of sitting in and embarrassing the suburban Ohio police force, Chief Evers agreed to meet with the group Wednesday at 1:00 pm.
Protesters aren’t taking him at his word and said they will wait right there in the Beavercreek Police Department lobby until that meeting actually happens.
Organizer Malaya Davis says that the protesters have three demands.
1. They want Officer Williams removed from the police force.
2. They want a complete overhaul of the police training materials that they blame for the militarized police response to Crawford doing nothing illegal.
3. Finally, Davis explains, “we want to really start a conversation around how we fundamentally shift the power dynamics and relationship between law enforcement and community. Law enforcement ranging from police officers to sheriff to county prosecutor.”
“An occupation is the way that we’re going to try to force these demands to at least be heard and be taken into consideration,” Davis added.
Another organizer, Darsheel Kaur, says she grew up in Beavercreek. She adds that “As a community organizer it’s hard for me, I want to do something with community support but at the same time I think we have to broaden the sense of community in this point.”
“We’ve been calling ourselves the Concerned Citizens because there’s people from all around, different ages, cultures, backgrounds, races. A lot of people have been supporting us. I think people are ready to start working together in a new way. I think it’s a very hopeful situation in terms of community transformation.”
Davis added, “People were looking to our leadership to really make sure that justice is being served–and what the community deems is justice, not what the justice system has deemed as justice.”
Stay tuned, our citizen journalists are on the ground and reporting from each of the protests in Beavercreek, Ohio.
(Article by Jackson Marciana, Abu Hussein and Zeidy David)