Police in New Orleans, Louisiana, thanked protesters Saturday for demonstrating peacefully following the death of George Floyd.
In a tweet, the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) said it appreciated how the group that gathered at Duncan Plaza conducted themselves during the event:
The New Orleans Police Department appreciates the way demonstrators conducted themselves today while exercising their right to free speech. We are proud of our great city and our community’s commitment to advocate for social justice.
— NOPD (@NOPDNews) May 30, 2020
However, video footage shared by Fox 8 reporter Josh Roberson appeared to show protesters chanting “death to the racist pig”:
Hundreds of masked protesters gathering currently at Duncan Plaza to shed light on racial injustice and George Floyd. Preparing to march down Tulane towards NOPD headquarters. Speakers claim this is a totally grassroots movement. Asking people to social distance as they march. pic.twitter.com/cdt3ofxUV8
— Josh Roberson FOX 8 (@JRobersonFOX8) May 30, 2020
“Probably could get more support if they spoke of real change and not violence towards cops. That ain’t it,” one Twitter user commented.
Friday, New Orleans Police Chief Shaun Ferguson called the video footage of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin with his knee on Floyd’s neck disturbing.
“We rely on our training, and — definitely — what you saw on that video is not anything that we’re trained to do,” he commented.
Ferguson also said the department’s program called E.P.I.C, which stood for ethical policing is courageous, was meant to encourage officers to speak out if they witnessed alleged misconduct while on the job.
“Just as we are responsible for policing our citizens, we should be just as responsible for policing one another,” he continued.
In a video posted Friday, Ferguson said the NOPD did not condone the actions or inactions of the Minneapolis police officers present when Floyd died.
“We encourage our officers to step in and intervene and prevent misconduct. We are committed to fairness and impartiality which is the foundation of constitutional policing,” he stated.
During a recent interview with BBC News, Mayor LaToya Cantrell said she wanted to see the other officers who were at the scene of Floyd’s death arrested.
“Being an African American woman who has felt the sting of oppression and very much tired of this happening over and over and over again in the black community, to black people and particularly black men. We’re tired of it,” she concluded.