AUSTIN (KXAN) – Several demonstrators were taken into police custody overnight outside Austin Police headquarters. The demonstration coincides with many others in cities across the country following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Floyd died in police custody on May 25.
Dozens showed up in downtown Austin late Friday night. They remained until early Saturday morning. Demonstrators held signs and chanted, “I can’t breathe,” and “Stop killing us.” Austin Police officers in tactical gear formed a line outside headquarters on E. 8th Street downtown.
Police arrested at least nine people. Charges include inciting a riot, throwing objects and harassment of a public servant.
The situation was more intense in Houston where it’s estimated at between 100 and 150 protesters were arrested. In Minneapolis, state and local law enforcement have struggled to get a handle on violent demonstrations and looting. During a news conference overnight, Gov. Tim Waltz said, “This is the largest civilian deployment in Minnesota history that we have out there today.”
The former Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, seen in a video with his knee on Floyd’s neck, has been charged with murder and manslaughter. Bail has been set at $500,000, according to the criminal complaint filed in the 4th Judicial District Court of Minneapolis.
Additional demonstrations are planned this weekend in Austin. Activists will protest not only Floyd’s death, but that of Michael Ramos. Ramos was unarmed when he was shot and killed in Austin on April 24. Officers were responding to a drug-related 911 call.
A rally is scheduled for noon Saturday in front of APD headquarters. The Austin Justice Coalition is also hosting a walk with Ramos’s mother on Sunday at 1 p.m. at the statehouse.