More than 50,000 people participated in peaceful protests this weekend in Pan Pacific Park and Hollywood, just north of our mid-Wilshire neighborhoods.
According to Captain Shannon K. Paulson, Commanding Officer of the Wilshire Division LAPD, “Sunday evening 50,000 engaged in a protest and march in Hollywood Division. The event was peaceful with no notable incidents. I must give kudos to my peer, Captain Steve Lurie, the commanding officer of Hollywood Division, who managed that phenomenal lift. Officers from Wilshire Division were on scene in a ready-reserve status but were ultimately not needed, as Captain Lurie ran a flawless operation,” wrote Paulson in an email message to neighborhood leaders this morning.
Paulson also notified neighbors of another protest scheduled in Wilshire Area today, starting at 8:00 a.m. the 100 S. block of La Brea. A protest bike rally was scheduled to travel a 25-mile loop to Venice Beach and back. Paulson added that LAPD is not concerned about the protest, other than some possible traffic congestion.
Saturday’s protest at Pan Pacific was led by a group of Black women in honor of Breonna Taylor, a young black woman who was killed by police while she was at home sleeping. Police had the wrong address and Taylor was not a suspect in any crime. Several other protests this week celebrated Taylor’s birthday, she would have been 27.
These photos were shared with the Buzz by Citrus Square resident Brad Rowe, who has been attending protests all week. Rowe, who teaches Criminal Justice and Drug Policy at the UCLA, told the Buzz he cancelled his class’s final exam, telling his students to go out and protest instead. Rowe said Saturday’s very large protest was very well organized. Food, water, masks and hand sanitizer was given to protesters, some tried to keep social distance but most wore masks.
Rowe said he was hopeful that the protests were a “window of opportunity for policy leaders to re-write state laws, look at current criminal codes, create equal opportunity in the cannabis industry and re-examine the schools-to-prison pipeline that captures so many young Black children among other possible reforms.”
We are not able to cover all the protests in our surrounding neighborhoods, so if you’d like to share your own experiences with the Buzz, we welcome your photos and observations. Please email us at [email protected]. We really appreciate your help creating an archive of stories and photos of this important time in our neighborhood’s history.
Finally, the photo above was taken around 7 a.m. last Sunday, May 31, by Windsor Square resident Barbara Hawley who was also up early that morning joining lots of people painting out graffiti and cleaning up damage done by looters the night before.
“I was very impressed that they were very organized and had supplies for anyone who wanted to help–I had just bought supplies at Anawalt for graffiti removal and it was not cheap! So this group was generous, especially when most other groups I saw around Fairfax and Beverly/Melrose had had to bring their own supplies. They were all friendly and I saw about 30 more students parking at Pan Pacific and coming over to the tables to get supplies. Very impressive for around 6:30 a.m.!,” Hawley wrote to the Buzz.