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Caravan for stolen lives demands police reform

A march for stolen lives took over Univeristy Avenue Sunday afternoon, demanding justice for those killed by police violence (Elijah Todd-Walden/Center for Broadcast Journalism)

A caravan of marchers took over a section of University Avenue in St. Paul Sunday, demanding justice for the lives of those taken by Minnesota police.

The caravan included both pedestrians and cars, which slowly marched or drove the three miles from the Saint Paul Police Western District headquarters to the State Capitol.

They chanted the names of numerous loved ones lost to police violence, including Ricky Cobb, who was killed by state troopers during a late-night traffic stop on July 31. There were also chants demanding changes to Minnesota policing in the state, such as community control of the police and the immediate release of bodycam footage after a police shooting.

The march was organized by Toshira Garraway and Trahern Crews. Garraway is the founder of Families Supporting Families, an organization dedicated to providing resources to those who have lost loved ones to violence. Crews is a founding member of Black Lives Matter Minnesota and a constant organizer in the Twin CIties.

“We’re demanding that Governor Walz fire the state trooper who fired recklessly into the car of Ricky Cobb,” Crews said. “We’re demanding that he be fired and charged. We’re demanding that Hennepin County Attorney Mary Moriarty bring charges to the… state trooper that killed Ricky Cobb.”

Once the caravan reached the Capitol, families of those lost to police violence took some time to remember their loved ones and reiterated the demands that changes must be made to policing in the state.

“Moving forward, we’ve got to move together like this, so they can’t get away with that,” Ricky Cobb’s twin brother Rashad Cobb said. “We all know the word, let’s stick with it.”

As the march came to a close, families were met by members of the Twin CIties community with hot dogs, hamburgers, corn and sweets, drinks, and a bouncy castle for the children.

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