Thousands of protesters marched silently down Fifth Avenue to Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Upper East Side townhouse yesterday afternoon to protest the NYPD's contentious "stop-and-frisk" policy.
On people's minds during the Father's Day march were Bronx teen Ramarley Graham, who was fatally shot by officer Richard Haste, and Trayvon Martin, who was gunned down by neighborhood watch George Zimmerman in Florida. Charges have been filed in both of the incidents, which took place in February.
"This program needs to be scrapped and needs to start from square one," National Association for the Advancement of Colored People President Benjamin Jealous said.
Though the demonstration was peaceful for most of the afternoon, at least nine protesters were arrested near Mayor Michael Bloomberg's home toward the end of the march, witnesses and police said.
A police spokeswoman was uncertain what the protesters were being charged with. The National Lawyers Guild, which had 25 legal observers at the march, said it was working to get the protesters out of jail last night.
Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly have defended the policy, arguing it helps get guns off the street.