BEAVERCREEK, Ohio (WDTN) – A few key moments Monday afternoon changed the tone of demonstrations in Beavercreek as police interacted with protesters near Walmart.
Hundreds gathered to demand justice for George Floyd, who died in police custody in Minneapolis.
They were simple acts that had a big impact; taking a knee and giving a hug altered the tenor of the event for the better. People are still frustrated, many are angry, but for some, there was an understanding Monday.
After Beavercreek officers used tear gas to control the crowd two separate times at the intersection of Pentagon Boulevard and North Fairfield Road, one officer approached the protesters and took a knee before leveling with the demonstrators, saying that if they stayed off the road, officers could reopen the street and the protesters could stay as long as they wanted.
Protesters at the scene told 2 NEWS once the officers started talking with and kneeling for the group, it changed the whole tone of the day.
11-year-old Alex came to the protest to tell police that George Floyd needs justice. He was even able to share a hug with his school resource officer, who he hasn’t seen in months due to schools being closed.
“It’s great to see him again since we’ve been out of school for a long time,” Alex said.
The protest didn’t solve every problem. Many feel that more change is needed and some people are still afraid. But Monday’s protest saw several generations coming together to try and make a difference.
Over an hour after the protest ended, several people quietly drove back to the area to pick up water bottles and trash that had been left behind.
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