Activists protesting Philando Castile shooting shut down Summit Ave. again


Summit Avenue in St. Paul is once again closed down after protesters gathered outside the Governor's Mansion Sunday evening.

Police had cleared the street after it had been occupied for two weeks following the death of Philando Castile at the hands of police on July 6, with protesters maintaining a presence on the sidewalk.

But the road is closed again, with more than 150 people gathering to reiterate their calls for justice over the 32-year-old St. Paul cafeteria supervisor's shooting.

A St. Paul police spokesman told BringMeTheNews: "Summit is currently blocked due to protesters in the roadway. We are assessing the situation and considering our options. We have not made any arrests or issued any citations related to this closure."

The Pioneer Press reports protesters say they have "no plans to leave anytime soon," having blocked the street from 5 p.m. Sunday.

"This is an occupation," protester Jacob Ladda told the newspaper. "This is our street, too. The people want justice. The system wants the street to be open. We don’t want to be here. We want justice."

They're calling for criminal charges against the St. Anthony police officer who shot Castile.

It started with rally at 4 p.m. on what event organizers dubbed "Stand for Something Sunday," encouraging people to join in for an evening of "dance, music food, love, family and art," according to the Facebook event page.

Protesters called St. Paul police and the state patrol to inform them prior to the demonstration taking place. The Star Tribune reports it proceeded peacefully, with children and adults throwing water balloons, singing songs and eating food.

The newspaper adds that Philando Castile's younger sister, Allysza Castile, made a brief appearance at the start of the rally, telling the crowd: "I don’t know you, but I love you. He was my role mod­el and he still is my role mod­el."

Video and images on the Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar show protesters had erected a makeshift screen for a "people's revolutionary movie night" outside the mansion, calling on more people to join them.

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