Black Lives Matter Utah rally in Salt Lake City, a peaceful call for justice

Apr 17, 2021, 2:29 PM

SALT LAKE CITY — Black Lives Matter Utah held a protest outside of the Salt Lake City Police Department on Friday. It coincided with protests across the nation and the high-profile trial of Derek Chauvin. Chauvin is a former Minneapolis police officer on trial for murder this week in the killing of George Floyd.

“We’re here to make a point about … we’re not going to stop,” Josh Chamberlain told KSL TV reporter Matt Rascon. Chamberlain told KSL TV that the most important thing they (he and his brother) can do to support the Black Lives Matter Utah movement is to show up at these protests.

“The system is important,” he said, “all the way up to policing and government is important. But everyday actions from each of us are super important as well.”

The Friday protest was mostly peaceful, Rascon reported.  Along with showing support for George Floyd, those who attended the Salt Lake City protest also showed support for Daunte Wright and Bryan Pena-Valencia. 

Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, was fatally shot by police officer Kimberly Potter during a traffic stop in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.  Potter has said she mistook her taser for her gun when she shot Wright.

A Unified police officer fatally shot Pena-Valencia on March 21, 2020. The shooting came after a foot chase near 6300 South and 3200 West.  The officer reported he feared for his life.

A report by Salt Lake County Attorney Sim Gill said the shooting of Pena-Valencia was unjustified and that the officer’s belief that his life was in danger wasn’t enough to justify the shooting of Pena-Valencia. But Gill also said he would not charge the officer, Omar Flores. 



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Black Lives Matter Utah rally in Salt Lake City, a peaceful call for justice