Denver DA’s decision in William DeBose shooting sparks protests

Several hundred people marched Thursday from the Colorado State Capitol to a city building to voice their frustration over the Denver district attorney’s decision to clear a police officer in the May shooting death of William DeBose.

The protest included DeBose’s wife and his father, who addressed the crowd and insisted his son did not intend to harm officers when he fled from them during a traffic stop. He also thanked the mass of people for supporting his family.

“This is wrong,” the father said in video recorded by multiple media outlets. “My son is dead. He was shot for running for his life.”

— Nathaniel Minor (@nbminor) June 18, 2020

On Thursday, McCann released her decision — along with officer body camera footage — and said she determined that DeBose pulled a 9 mm pistol and pointed at the officer as he fled. Therefore, Cpl. Ethan Antonson was justified in using lethal force, she wrote in her decision letter.

Andrea Perez, 27, says the DA’s decision is wrong. “Beth McCann should be out of her position,” Perez said.

The crowd rallied within an hour of McCann releasing her decision.

Later, though, the demonstration turned into a rally for DACA, formally known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Thursday morning that a Trump administration attempt at overturning the Obama-era policy was invalid. The court’s decision brought relief to the more than 15,000 people living in Colorado with DACA protection because they were brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Still, the Supreme Court ruling allows the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to try again.

“We have to celebrate, but it was bittersweet,” a speaker told the crowd.

The demonstrators also marched to the Denver Justice Center and shouted outside the Downtown Detention Center before heading back toward the Capitol as rain fell.


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