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Community members march to East Cleveland Police Department as part of call for accountability

Updated: May. 31, 2021 at 1:06 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Community members gathered on Monday afternoon for a march to the East Cleveland Police Department in an effort, as organizers described, to shed light on those who died during police-involved incidents.

According to the event page, participants gathered to demand accountability from law enforcement agencies, specifically in the case involving 18-year-old Vincent Belmonte, who was shot and killed by an East Cleveland police officer following a pursuit in January.

Police allege the teen was driving a stolen car.

His family said it was a borrowed vehicle.

Either way, his family said he ended up shot four times in the back.

“This is a gathering in honor of, not just Brianna Taylor and George Floyd, whose deaths have changed things nationally,” said Kareem Henton, of Black Lives Matter Cleveland. “In Northeast Ohio, we have our own and their names are Vincent Belmonte, Jun Wang, Desmond Franklin, Arthur Keith, Angelo Miller, Craig Bickerstaff, and Luke Stewart.”

Members of Black Lives Matter Cleveland organized the march during which about 125-people showed us Monday afternoon.

They chanted several slogans including “No Justice, No Peace,” and “If we don’t get we will shut it down.”

That’s what they did when they arrived at the intersection of Euclid Avenue and Marloes in front of East Cleveland City Hall, where the police department is also located.

They blocked the intersection with police sitting in their vehicles nearby watching.

Mariah Crenshaw, a community activist spoke loudly and emotionally about what she called police perpetrators.

She said they haven’t taken the re-certification required by Ohio law to legally wear a gun and badge and call themselves police officers.

They vowed to keep protesting until they get justice for those 93 lives that have been lost at the hands of the police.

125 marchers protest the shooting death of 18 year by East Cleveland police back in January
125 marchers protest the shooting death of 18 year by East Cleveland police back in January(Kirk Middle School, East Cleveland)

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