Students of Huston-Tillotson University held a vigil on campus Thursday night to honor the lives of Terence Crutcher and Keith Lamont Scott, both black men who were shot dead by police officers in different cities within four days of each other.
The event began with speeches about racism against minorities in America and ended with a candlelight vigil.
“The black community is coming together to speak out against injustice,” said Huston-Tillotson student Talia Washington, who was one of the vigil’s organizers. “We are peacefully working to get things done.”
Washington said she and a few friends were able to organize the vigil in two days.
During the candlelight vigil, attendees circled a small group of people who named black people shot dead in cases throughout the past several years:
“We can’t drive home: Samuel DuBose. We can’t run from robbers: Reynaldo Cuevas. We can’t ask for help after an accident: Jonathan Farrell. We can’t drive cars: Sandra Bland. We can’t go to the store: Mike Brown. We can’t wear hoodies: Trayvon Martin.”
Scott was fatally shot Tuesday in Charlotte, N.C. Police say Scott disregarded repeated demands to drop his gun, while neighborhood residents say he was holding a book, not a weapon, as he waited for his son to get off the school bus. Police have refused to release video of the shooting.
Crutcher was fatally shot on Sept. 16 in Tulsa, Okla. The officer who shot him has been charged with first-degree manslaughter, with police saying in court documents that the officer “reacted unreasonably.”
With information from the Associated Press.