Protesters line street outside City Hall, call for Baton Rouge mayor to resign

Protesters line street outside BR City Hall - 5 p.m.

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Protesters set up outside Baton Rouge City Hall rounding out a week of demonstrations related to the officer-involved shooting death of Alton Sterling.

The protest started at roughly 9 a.m. Monday morning and ended mid-afternoon when a thunderstorm pushed through the area.

The demonstration, which was organized by the local NAACP, began with several dozen people began the demonstration with chants, but the protest moved to silence shortly before noon when those participating packed together to block the entrance of City Hall.

"I just believe that standing up as a unit were saying that were sick of this. And we've just had enough," protester Brandy Stewart said.

"I feel really good about coming out and letting my voice heard and not being silent. Actually being able to do something and not sit around," said protester Patricia Powell.

Protesters demanded that the two officers involved in the Alton Sterling case be prosecuted and that Mayor Kip Holden resign.

Byron Sharper is the vice president of the Baton Rouge NAACP and also a candidate in the upcoming race for mayor-president of East Baton Rouge. He said "lack of leadership" described Holden's job as mayor.

"He had 11 and a half years to bring this community together and I think he's done more to hurt this community than to help," Sharper said.

Protesters wanted to come inside city hall and start a sit-in, but Baton Rouge police and security officers did not let them inside.

The crowd of around 35 dispersed around 10:15 a.m. But later that morning, some of the protesters and a few new faces returned to block the doorways to city hall.

They were asked by fire officials to leave one door open for safety reasons, but stood silently in front of the other doors throughout the afternoon.

Chermicka Brown said she knew Sterling for four years. She heard about the protest and joined.

"I think it's awesome what everybody is doing," Brown said. "I think it's going to a message it's gonna get to someone. Someone is gonna make the right decision to incarcerate those guys."

Police officers said on Monday that Mayor Holden would not be commenting on the protests or doing any interviews.

At the same time as the protest, District Attorney Hillar Moore III held a press conference to announce that he has recused his office from prosecution in relation to the Alton Sterling case. He cited a personal relationship with parents of one of the officers involved.

This protest comes one day after a peaceful march to the State Capitol was eclipsed by an unscheduled protest that happened at the conclusion of the program.

Officials say 50 people were arrested at the secondary protest. According to the EBR Parish Prison booking sheet, all but seven of those arrested were from outside of the Baton Rouge area. An additional four are from cities directly neighboring Baton Rouge. The majority are from New Orleans. The rest are from Minnesota, North Carolina, Missouri, Georgia, New York, Washington D.C. and other cities from around Louisiana.

More than half of the individuals arrested were white females.

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