DES MOINES, Iowa -- “No justice. No peace.” That’s what dozens of protestors chanted in front of the Des Moines police department on Saturday.
This week’s officer involved shooting of an unarmed man sparked the rally. Ryan Bolinger, 28, was fatally shot in the torso by Officer Vanessa Miller for dancing erratically in the street.
With signs in hand, protestors demanded for the department to be held accountable for an issue they claim is unjustifiable and being overlooked.
“All lives matter. This police brutality and killings is getting out of hand,” said Terrance Williams.
One man drove from Cleveland, Ohio to attend the event. Deo Odolecki helps run the website, copblock.org. It highlights police brutality nationwide and encourages people to film the police and hold them accountable for their actions.
"More people are waking up to the fact that police are doing this with immunity. They have the support of a broken system so it makes it easy for them to get away with that they do,” said Deo Odolecki. “Right or wrong, whether it was a mistake or not she (Office Miller) still killed somebody. That should have consequences.”
Odolecki along with several others tried to enter in the police station but instead we’re locked out and forced to communicate with someone inside via telephone. Due to employee safety and the potential of disrupting the building during business hours, authorities denied them access.
The protestors said they want answers. Many have their own opinions about what is wrong within the department that caused the shooting to happen in the first place.
Many said the shooting is an authoritative issue not a race issue. However some say it race is a part of it.
Williams said, “It has been brushed under the rug. If it was a black person the news media CNN FOX and NBC would be covering this story but no one is covering this story.”
However others say the incident has to do with gender. One man said "things" need to be addressed when a department hires a female, like Officer Miller. Kim Glenn spoke against that statement, “It’s not a man or a woman thing. It’s anyone’s. The police department needs professional development.”
Viewpoints aside, they all believe matters could have been differently. They are pushing for the use of body camera, more training, transparency and accountability.
“You just can’t say I got a gun and badge and you do what I say. People are not going to really respect that or honor that. If you give me respect and I'm going to respect you,” said Williams.
The protest ended peacefully. There were no arrests.