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'This is what MLK would be doing': Protest on national holiday in Minneapolis, St. Paul

MINNEAPOLIS -- Two groups of protesters conducted a brief and peaceful takeover of the Marshall Avenue-Lake Street bridge on a frigid Martin Luther King Jr. Day afternoon.

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Black Lives Matter protested the police killings of Jamar Clark and Marcus Golden by blocking traffic Monday on the Lake Street Bridge over the Mississippi River. Scott Takushi/Pioneer Press

MINNEAPOLIS - Two groups of protesters conducted a brief and peaceful takeover of the Marshall Avenue-Lake Street bridge on a frigid Martin Luther King Jr. Day afternoon.

It was about 1 degree above zero Fahrenheit as protesters marched onto the bridge from St. Paul and Minneapolis shortly after 3:30 p.m. The St. Paul protesters carried signs demanding justice for Marcus Golden, who was shot and killed a year ago by St. Paul police. The Minneapolis protesters called for justice for Jamar Clark, who died after he was shot by Minneapolis police in November.
“This is a tale of two cities,” said Monique Cullars-Doty, an aunt of Marcus Golden.

“This is not a pretty tale. This is an ugly tale.”
Cullars-Doty and Golden’s mother, Ericka Cullars-Golden, both called for a new investigation of the incident that ended in Marcus Golden’s death. The women said the St. Paul Police Department’s version of events changed between first reports of the Jan. 14, 2015, incident and May, when a grand jury determined two St. Paul officers were justified in shooting at Golden after concluding he drove at one of them with his SUV.
“We need to get this cleared up,” Cullars-Golden said. “I know things didn’t happen the way they’re saying.”
The Minneapolis group demanded again that Hennepin County not convene a grand jury to determine whether the killing of Clark was justified. The protesters, many of whom took part in the occupation of the Minneapolis Police Department’s 4th Precinct station after Clark’s shooting, say they don’t trust the grand jury process and want a special prosecutor appointed instead.
Police on both sides of the Mississippi River blocked traffic and let the protesters occupy the bridge without incident. Spokespeople for the two groups stated their demands and led chants for about 30 minutes, then marched back to their own cities.
“Somebody needs to hear our voice, and I guess we need to keep shutting things down until they do,” said one of the Minneapolis protest leaders. “This is what MLK would be doing even if it was cold.”

The Pioneer Press is a Forum News Service media partner.

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Hundreds march a short distance in frigid weather Monday in downtown St. Paul to mark the birthday of the slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr., part of a Statewide Holiday Celebration. Scott Takushi/Pioneer Press

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