Faith leaders march for Andrew Brown Jr. Saturday in Elizabeth City


ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (WAVY) — On Saturday, leaders and community members in Elizabeth City marched once again for Andrew Brown Jr.

The march began at 11 a.m. at the Pasquotank County Public Safety Building and lead to the site where Brown was killed.

There, they placed wreaths and sashes.

The event included faith leaders, as well as an attorney for the Brown family.

Even as rain poured down, Rev. Dr. T. Anthony Spearman says he felt encouraged by the enthusiasm he saw.

“The people that have been maintaining the spirit of this protest for 53 years are inspired by what has transpired here today,”  he said.

Demonstrations have been ongoing most days since Brown’s death on April 21. The march Saturday — much like other demonstrations — demands “truth and transparency and accountability” in the death of Brown.

The march comes in the wake of state autopsy results which confirmed that Brown died of a gunshot wound to the head.

Brown was shot and killed by Pasquotank County deputies as they attempted to serve search and arrest warrants at a home on Perry Street.

Specifically, protestors like Kirk Rivers says they’ll continuing organizing and marching until a judge publicly releases the body camera footage of the shooting.

“Today, with the weather overcast, we still march,” he said. “We have a saying no matter what, whether it’s rain, sleet, snow, thunder or hail, we’re going to march for justice for Andrew Brown Junior.”

For Lois Hinson and her husband Jim Beard, they came out to march as a way to support the family’s calls for transparency.

“Everybody has a right to live and I just don’t think this was right what happened,” said Hinson. “I don’t think they’re being open and truthful about it.”

They say they also feel encouraged by seeing the consistent marches and peaceful protests the community has had since Brown’s death in April.

“I think there’s a movement around this state and in this country and it says that we’re not going to go back to the way things were as usual,” said Beard. “We’ve got to make some changes. And so, we continue to come out.”

The three deputies who fired their weapons will not face charges, according to the Pasquotank district attorney. The sheriff said all deputies have returned to work and some were disciplined and retrained, however, one has submitted his resignation.

Activists have also been pressing the Superior Court to order the public release of body camera footage of the shooting. So far, only some members of Brown’s family have been allowed to view the footage. Footage was also shown during the district attorney’s press conference last month when he announced the deputies involved would not face charges.

Next Saturday, on Juneteenth, Elizabeth City plans to unveil a Black Lives Matter street art mural painted outside the Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Office.

The march and rally was livestreamed here.

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