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WATCH NOW: Michigan City protests move to Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets; curfew issued
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WATCH NOW: Michigan City protests move to Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets; curfew issued

  • Updated

MICHIGAN CITY — Hundreds of protesters stood in a field of tall grass behind the Michigan City Police Station before taking their message of “No justice, no peace” to the streets.

Speaker Brett Kelley Sr., a lifelong Michigan City resident, looked out on a crowd of 400 or more people: white, Latino and African American.

“For one of the first times in my living in Michigan City, I feel included,” Kelley said. “As a 6-foot, 6-inch black man, I’ve always been treated suspect.”

“This is the life we live in America,” Kelley said. “Let’s have justice, not just us.

“After all the killings of Americans at the hands of police, for the first time I see a majority of whites standing up.”

The crowd marched down Michigan Avenue, one of the city’s main arteries, on their way back to the police station. Bystanders honked and hollered their support.

Michigan City Mayor Duane Parry issued a city-wide curfew beginning at 9 p.m. due to protesters moving near Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets.

Police in face shields ordered the crowd to move across the street. A pickup truck with a plow on it was blocking the entrance while protesters milled around.

Protesters threw water bottles towards police, forcing them to step in front of the truck.

Nearby Lighthouse Liquors had damaged windows.

Officers were on the roof of the police station and deployed a drone.

Earlier, a protester climbed onto a railroad signal but came back down without police involvement.

Sarah Zawacki, one of the organizers and speakers, began working on the rally Thursday.

“I’m completely blown away at the solidarity that the people of Michigan City are showing,” she said.

Marcher Kim Scikes of Michigan City was impressed by the turnout.

“It’s so mixed racially, age-wise, all kinds of things,” Scikes said.

“This police violence has got to stop,” Scikes said as chants of “I can’t breathe” and “Hands up, don’t shoot” rippled through the crowd.

“It’s a show of solidarity when you’re trying to make structural and social change,” said marcher Esther Ikoro, of Michigan City.

“I’ve had experiences where people have called the cops at houses where I stayed as a child,” Ikora said.

“The young people are fed up with this,” Zawacki said.

Zawacki said she was at the Hammond protest on Saturday but left before police responded.

“I checked my phone and saw my friends getting maxed,” she said.

Check back with as this story develops.

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