Protests continue for another night in downtown Phoenix

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By Brad Denny By Brad Denny
By Brad Denny By Brad Denny
By Brad Denny By Brad Denny
By Brad Denny By Brad Denny
By Brad Denny By Brad Denny

PHOENIX -- Another night of protests against Phoenix police occurred on Tuesday night, with demonstrators lying in the middle of light rail tracks and blocking traffic for about an hour.

A small group met at a church at 14th Street and Washington earlier in the evening. As they marched, the numbers grew to between 50 to 75 people. They shut down Jefferson at First Street, right in front of US Airways Center as the Phoenix Suns game let out.

Phoenix police had a massive presence, not just to control traffic, but to keep the marchers and the public safe and discourage any conflicts.

The protesters are angry about the shooting of Rumain Brisbon one week ago.

A Phoenix police officer was looking for a drug suspect when Brisbon ran, resulting in a confrontation. Police say Brisbon had something in his pocket. The officer, identified Tuesday as Mark Rine, was not sure if Brisbon was reaching for a gun. Rine fired his weapon, killing Brisbon. Investigation found that Brisbon was reaching for a bottle of pills.

Protests started the following day, and Tuesday the group was smaller but no less passionate. Some yelled expletives while others declared calls for action against police use of deadly force. Others in the group said it’s important to examine officer involved shootings but don’t believe Brisbon’s death was about race.

"You can't fight race with race," said Deja Curry. "It’s not going to work. Give everybody the same rights, treat everybody the same. They know it’s bigger than race."

As the march came to an end, some people tried to goad police into making an arrest or some other aggressive move. Police showed restraint and let the marchers block the street and kept watch.

There was no word about a protest Wednesday night.

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