MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The “Black Lives Matter” group that held a protest at the Mall of America last month is planning another big event in downtown St. Paul on Monday.
As part of a national movement to “Reclaim MLK,” officials with the group said it expects more than 2,000 people to march from the intersection of University Ave. and Snelling Ave. in St. Paul to the State Capitol.
The march is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.
Civil rights attorney Nekima Levy-Pounds said on Sunday that the group’s momentum is building and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is the perfect day to discuss some of the difficult issues she said many people still face regarding race relations with law enforcement and racial profiling.
“People are going to feel inconvenienced, that is the very point of civil disobedience,” Levy-Pounds said. “These are the same types of issues Dr. King had to grapple with.”
Levy-Pounds said she faces charges from the City of Bloomington in December’s protest at Mall of America that could require her to help pay for some of the thousands of dollars in overtime police presence or even face some jail time.
Levy-Pounds said Monday’s march is intended to be peaceful, and the event organizers are trying to cooperate with police.
St. Paul Police Sgt. Paul Paulos said Sunday the organizers have been cooperative to a degree, only telling police where the march will begin and end. More than 2,000 people had responded they were going to the march on the group’s Facebook page as of Sunday evening.
Levy-Pounds said the family of 24-year-old Marcus Golden will be marching among the crowd. Golden was shot and killed in St. Paul by police on Wednesday after police said he drove his vehicle toward officers after they responded to a woman’s complaint about receiving threatening text messages.
The “Black Lives Matter Minneapolis” group’s Facebook page said a vigil will also be held tomorrow at the site of the shooting along University Ave. on Monday.
Golden’s family has asked the public to remain calm until the investigation into the death in completed.
Levy-Pounds said the group is also working on getting some legislation introduced in Minnesota that would require law enforcement officers to wear body cameras across the entire state.
“It’s time we begin to respect the dignity of all people and ensure laws are applied in just equal manner,” Levy-Pounds said.