Fischer identified the victim as Tyler Gerth. No more had been shot on the square, said Fischer. In a statement to the WDRB, Gerth’s family said he was a photographer and had taken pictures of the protests.
“We are devastated that his life was taken from us much too early. Tyler was incredibly kind, tender and generous and had deep beliefs and beliefs, ”the statement said. “It was this sense of justice that led Tyler to be part of the peaceful demonstrations that work to destroy systemic racism in our society’s systems.”
Activists have been gathering in Jefferson Square Park for more than a month to protest police brutality. The video posted online on Saturday shows a man in shorts and a tank top pointing a gun towards the tents set up in the park and opening fire. Videos on social media show protesters fleeing the area and in some cases diving and crouching behind parked cars, tents, and trees nearby while shots are fired.
“None of us wanted this area to be the scene of a peaceful protest,”
“We cannot allow a senseless act, a person to derail this dream, this vision that we have as a city,” he said.
Provisional chief of police Robert Schroeder said the alleged gunman had participated in the protests since the beginning. Schröder said the man had been arrested several times in the past few weeks and had been asked by other demonstrators to “leave the park” for his “disturbing behavior”.
The surveillance material shared by Schröder at the press conference showed the man in an obvious confrontation with several demonstrators on the edge of the square before he opened fire.
Jasmine Harris, a 27-year-old protester, said she and others attended a music video when she heard gunshots.
“I could only hear: bang, bang. I thought it was fireworks, ”she said. She heard four more shots, she said, and saw a man bleeding on the floor.
“It was a very good time, we all got along,” she said before the shoot. “It was heartbreaking.”
32-year-old Maxwell Mitchell said things in the park were “very happy” on Saturday evening.
“There was a children’s march. Things were happy, things were happy, and you know this happens from nowhere. And it turned things completely south,” he said.
Mitchell, who posted a video of the shootout on social media, fears that the shootout could make it more difficult to meet protesters’ demands.
“Everyone as a group has tried to find the best way to achieve justice. He has met the demands that we have to achieve justice not only for Breonna Taylor, but for countless black people killed by corrupt police officers,” said he. “Well, in my opinion that really derailed.”
Early Sunday morning, the police announced that while they continued to allow peaceful protests during the day, they would not allow demonstrators to stay in the park overnight or set up “tents of any kind.”
The park – a small square in the city center – has in recent weeks become a camp where demonstrators sleep in tents and stands overnight, distribute food and supplies and demonstrate against police brutality and systemic racism during the day. Activists returned on Sunday to donate groceries, clothing, water and toiletries to the homeless in the park who had lost their belongings when the police cleared the area after the shooting.
Shannon Higgins, 37, distributed pizza slices to demonstrators. “I woke up this morning and saw that the homeless lost everything: their tents, their clothes, their food,” said Higgins. “Everything that was set up at the campsite was gone. I just wanted to get up and help serve.
“Now we have to get together again. You have people who were in unity down here, who lived here and found comfort here, and everything was swept away. Now that everything has been swept away, we have to rebuild. “
Schroeder apologized to the demonstrators for the way the park had been cleared of tents and supplies, saying that it was not the department’s intention to damage items, but rather that many items would be treated “in a way that was ours Standards lies “.
Anti-violence activist Christopher 2X, who heads Game Changers, said the shootout reflected an epidemic of gun violence that had continued to plague Louisville during the pandemic and recent unrest.
“I would have thought when Covid met that we would press the pause button here in ruthless shootouts,” he said. “I really thought it would withdraw the deal. But I was wrong. “
Louisville has become a center of protests against police brutality. Demonstrations related to Taylor’s death have increased after police killed George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25. Taylor, a 26-year-old rescue sister, was killed by police at her home in Louisville after executing an arrest warrant on March 13 without knocking.
At least three officers were involved in the raid and fired into Taylor’s apartment shortly after midnight. In a lawsuit filed in April, Taylor’s family said the Louisville police had issued a search warrant to Taylor, looking for a man who did not live there. Taylor’s friend Kenneth Walker, who was reportedly a licensed gun owner, shot officials when they tried to enter the home and the officers returned the fire.
Taylor was shot and killed at least eight times. The authorities have released little information about the killing. It is under investigation by state and local authorities and the FBI.
The Louisville police released a police officer involved in the shooting last week. The city council voted this month to ban arrest warrants that would allow the police to enter a house unannounced. The June 11 measure to ban the arrest warrants is known as the Breonna Law.