Two peaceful protests against police brutality took place in the Coachella Valley Monday following a wave of non-violent demonstrations across the region last week sparked by the in-custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
More than 50 people showed up at Ruth Hardy Park in Palm Springs, where, as of 6 p.m., the group mostly sat spread out in the shade listening to speakers who took turns passing the microphone.
The Palm Springs Police Department thanked the organizers of the event on social media for keeping it calm.
Earlier Monday, upwards of two dozen protesters marched and played music peacefully along Palm Drive near Two Bunch Palms Trail in Desert Hot Springs, some toting signs saying “Latinx 4 Black Lives” and “You Can’t Kill Us All.”
Cars passing by honked in support while police kept watch from afar.
“We want police reform. We want them to dismantle police brutality and all of it,” one female protester told KESQ. “We want them to be held accountable for their actions.”
Similar demonstrations, most of them problem-free, were held throughout the Coachella Valley last week and over the weekend, with a gathering Saturday at Ruth Hardy Park among the largest.
About 1,000 people turned out for the “Enough is Enough” protest organized by a group of eight teens who go by the name “Young Justice Advocates.”
The hourlong program included various speakers, including Rep. Raul Ruiz, D-Palm Desert, who encouraged the crowd to hold their elected officials accountable for police misconduct.
“(We) shouldn’t wait for an act of Congress, or for Congress to get its act together,” he said. “The sheriff is an elected official, accountable to you.”
Another demonstration is planned at Ruth Hardy Park Sunday in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, according to organizers.
Palm Springs police announced on Monday the department was aware of the event and working with the organizers, and warned motorists to avoid the area due to traffic impacts.
“Thank you all for maintaining the peace at these gatherings,” a tweet read.
>> Want to read more stories like this? Get our Free Daily Newsletters Here!Follow us: