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Thousands March Across America For Black Lives; Floyd Family Gathers For Memorial Amid 12th Day Of Protests Across U.S.; Protests Underway Across The U.S. For The 12th Day; Protesters Take A Knee In Atlanta; Protests Continue In Minnesota. Aired 4-5p ET

Aired June 6, 2020 - 16:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[16:00:06]

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Ana Cabrera in New York. Thanks for being here.

It is day 12 of protests in America, and these are just some of the scenes across the country today as people in big cities and small towns take to the streets, expressing their hope, their fear, their frustration, their anger, pleading for an end to racism and police brutality -- what is becoming a movement sparked by the death of George Floyd, the unarmed black man who died after a police officer restrained him with a knee on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

Today, George Floyd's family saying good-bye to him at this memorial service in North Carolina. And this comes a day after President Trump invoked Floyd while he was touting the unemployment numbers while also referencing protests in those same remarks saying that, this is a great day for him, for George Floyd.

We are on the ground covering protests all across the country this hour. Let's start in Washington, D.C., where the crowds are swelling. Officials there are bracing for what may be the biggest rallies they've seen yet.

We have CNN's Boris Sanchez there. We have Suzanne Malveaux also on season. We have Alex Marquardt getting in position because there are multiple marches and rallies and demonstrations right now.

Suzanne, tell us what's happening where you are.

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Ana, there are thousands and thousands of people who have taken to the streets of Washington, D.C., today and really there's an ebb and flow to all of this as sometimes the crowds will surge in one area as they go either to the White House or Lafayette Park or Lincoln Memorial, and then they'll disperse and they'll break up and be on the streets.

I just wanted to show you here, 17th Street, the diversity of the protest movement here. We have seen, unlike previous protests for Black Lives Matter, a number of white families and white protesters alongside with black, Latino, Muslim, just about everybody here in unison together with signs that say, white silence equals violence, where everybody is accountable.

And I had a chance to talk to a number of people throughout the day, and some people describe it, really, as perhaps a beginning. Others describe it as an awakening, but clearly, Ana, there is something very different that is taking place on the streets today and around the country as people seem to appreciate and understand what so many black Americans are going through.

I want you to take a listen to a young man who I spoke to earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We live in a bubble sometimes, and, you know, everyone else is putting out a message and it's everywhere right now, and we want to show up and we want people to know that even though there's coronavirus going on and there's an unprecedented level of deaths from it, that, you know, we stand by the people who are being murdered every single day by police violence.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MALVEAUX: As the crowds swell, it is still very, very peaceful.

CABRERA: Suzanne, we are still with you. We are listening in to what they're saying right now. Let's just listen to what they're chanting.

PROTESTERS: This is what democracy looks like! This is what democracy looks like! This is what democracy looks like!

CABRERA: OK, so we can hear them saying, "this is what democracy looks like." This is what democracy looks like, as they chant those words, marching through the streets, of course, invoking the memory of George Floyd and not letting how he died be what is normal in this country.

Let's move to Boris Sanchez, who is also in Washington, D.C.

And as we look at all of these images today there in D.C., Boris, we see a lot, a lot of people protesting. We don't see a huge law enforcement presence, which is a stark contrast, certainly, to the images we saw earlier in the week.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: No question, Ana, specifically where we are now, this is just outside Lafayette Park, and if you look over to our right, that's that barrier that President Trump had erected around Lafayette Park and an enormous barrier that goes around the entire White House complex just about, and as you can see, there are people as far as the eye can see.

I've done quite a few of these. I've been at this intersection all week. This is the most people that I've seen at one of these demonstrations, and you get the sense that there is a catharsis. People are happy to see that so many people are out here supporting their cause, and as you noted, there is not a heavy handed law enforcement presence. We've gone by some very large military vehicles blocking off traffic

in certain areas, but I have yet to see any law enforcement official in head to toe riot gear the way that we have been seeing, specifically in that block just behind us where we're walking to now.

[16:05:08]

Again, peaceful out here. I do want to speak to a young man, Jason, who you mentioned that you had been watching from home what had been unraveling. This is your actual first time at this march.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is. Yes.

SANCHEZ: What do you think?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's just overwhelming to see how many people are out here supporting the cause. I'm just one person. Everyone here is just one person.

But when this many people come out, something like this that's beautiful happens and it's completely unacceptable what is happening in this country and change needs to happen, and that's what we're all trying to do. We're trying to make that change.

SANCHEZ: All right. Jason, we appreciate your time. Thank you so much. Stay safe.

Ana, again, very different scenes, specifically, at this intersection from what we had seen in previous days. We'll see how it unfolds as we get later and later in the evening -- Ana.

CABRERA: OK, Boris Sanchez on the streets of Washington, D.C., and here's an aerial look where you can get a better sense of just how many people are there. We know there were calls for one million protesters to show up today. Of course, we have no way to know if that's how many are in the streets.

But Alex Marquardt is in another location, the place where many of these protests have culminated in the following nights or the previous nights, I should say, that we've seen protests in Washington, D.C., and I should warn our viewers that there's a large delay in the signal that we have with Alex.

So, Alex, tell us what you're seeing there and what protesters want to get across.

ALEXANDER MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, Ana, there may not be a million people out today, but as Boris was saying, this is the largest number of protesters that I have yet to see in these Washington, D.C., protests. We've been out here all week, when it was raining, when it was sunny, when it was violent, when it was calm, and clearly, people wanted to come out today to show their solidarity.

I've spoken to a number of people out here who are coming out for the very first time. They wanted to come out because of its importance. They wanted to come out because they've seen how peaceful it's been. They wanted to come out because they want to participate.

This spot where we are, this has been the epicenter of these protests in Washington, D.C. This is what the mayor commissioned yesterday as Black Lives Matter Plaza. And it is right in front of the White House.

This, Ana, is as close as protesters can get to the White House, so it is a bit of trolling on the part of the mayor of Washington, D.C., but it is also a huge expression of solidarity. This was the site on Monday night when those protesters were violently swept out of here by those different law enforcement agencies, so the president could come to that church right there for that photo opportunity.

Boris was talking about the law enforcement, Ana, and what is remarkable today is we have been in front of this fence by the White House all week, as I was saying. What is remarkable is there is no law enforcement that we could see behind that fence. That is a reflection that they believe that today's protest will be peaceful.

Another reflection of that is the fact that there is no curfew here in D.C. tonight. There has not been a curfew, in fact, since Wednesday night, and there have been no protests -- no arrests, rather, for the last three nights.

But that question of law enforcement is a huge flash point between the man in that White House and the mayor of D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser, has demanded that all, what she called, extraordinary federal forces, so the federal agents that have poured into D.C., those 11 states that have sent National Guard, she wants to see those forces out of Washington, and she has said that everybody should watch what's happening in D.C. so that it doesn't happen elsewhere -- Ana.

CABRERA: OK, and, Alex, I should point out to our viewers as they look at the split screen, can we put back up the aerial image there?

As we were hearing protesters where Alex is at chant, black lives matter, you can see the yellow on the ground in those pictures that protesters are standing on. Those are gigantic yellow letters that spell out, "Black Lives Matter." It was the mayor who ordered those words be painted on the streets of D.C. this is 16th Street northwest between K and H Streets, we are told. And Mayor Bowser on Friday normally renaming 16th Street Black Lives Matter Plaza so that is what you are seeing right there where protesters are gathering in D.C.

Our thanks to Alex as well.

Let's head to New York now where protesters today have also had peaceful demonstrations. CNN's Bill Weir is keeping a close eye on what's happening.

And you guys have been on the move, Bill. What's going on right now?

BILL WEIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We've been moving fast, Ana, all around midtown from 14th Street up to Madison Square Garden and 34th Street, an incredibly diverse crowd, mostly masks, as you can see.

And what's interesting, I have seen more people giving away water than selling it today.

[16:10:03]

A sense that communities are coming out, folks in apartment buildings cheering as they pass by. This one was started by Jon Batiste, the band leader for Stephen Colbert's late night show.

So, he wanted to put out a second line feel. He put out the call for musicians and we've seen dozens of tubas and drummers and trumpeters play. You can hear some of them now. They've kind of broken up in terms of the cohesiveness of the band.

But it's been news in New York right around midnight last night, it was announced, as this rainstorm comes down on us, that four commanding officers from the NYPD have been reassigned as punishment for the way they handled the first night of protests. You may have seen it on social media in one incident.

These are the officers in the white shirts. I don't see any around right now. We've been passing NYPD. We've been watching this.

But these are the officers in the white shirts, and one incidence, one of them pushed a woman down, violently, and another, we saw an officer pull a man's mask down and then pepper spray him in the face. Again, they still have their jobs, but reassigned from their Brooklyn assignments now. It's been a real evolution in the NYPD's response to this.

But last night, only 40 arrests relative to the hundreds we were seeing earlier in the week. Much fewer incidents of rioting, fires, looting, a lot more diverse, peaceful protests like this.

It seems like those incidents that caught so much attention for NYPD in the wrong way -- let's go this way. It seems like those just brought more people out. Families that may not have come out, but there's NYPD, as you can see, standing by. They've been clearing the streets and sort of rolling shutdowns to allow for these spontaneous protests to come by.

You can see some officers have the zip tie handcuffs at the ready, but nobody's in the riot gear, the heavy shields and armor that we have seen in prior nights.

As the night goes on, after dark, it's a different story, obviously. Things get very different. It's night and day, literally.

But right now, as these fat rain drops fall, you can see the passion is still fueling this march forward, and I would put it in the several thousand. It's hard to know -- Ana.

CABRERA: Where are you going, Bill? Where are you all headed?

WEIR: That's a good question. Looks like we're headed back to Union Square. Oh, I'm sorry, no, we're further south. So, we're on 10th and 5th right now. We could be heading down to city hall in Lower Manhattan. But it seems

to be really spontaneous. We'll figure it out as we go. We'll be here all through -- through the night.

CABRERA: OK, and we will be back with you as well. Thank you very much. Bill, we appreciate that.

We've gone to New York. We've gone to D.C. Let's head to Chicago now where protests are also under way.

Ryan, looks like a lot of people turning out on what appears to be a really beautiful day in Chicago.

RYAN YOUNG, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, if you remember last week, there was so much strife and sort of pushing and shoving with police cars set on fire. This is a completely different situation right now.

Take a look above, Ana, as you look at this crowd. It stretches and it's been going for miles and miles as people have been organizing to make sure they get their voices out because they wanted to make sure that last week is not what stuck in people's minds when it comes to the city of Chicago.

So, they have more than 4,000 people at this protest who are really excited about the fact that they've been able to organize this group and they have had marches for the past few days here in this city that have not turned violent at all. All of them have been peaceful. And that's what they've been really pushing. There's been a conversation about making sure that the city and the world here in Chicago, being positive about not only protests but social change.

You think about a city where obviously there's been people talking about they want a change in the police department here in Chicago. That's a part of what they're doing. So they're going to do a moment of silence right now for the victims of gun violence at this point. So you see this happening right now.

Look at all these people going back who are taking a knee as this speaker has asked them to take a knee. They've walked over four miles today, Ana. No problems. No looting. No sort of spraying painting of all the buildings that they have.

So that's one of the things that we've seen today is a different tone completely in terms of what these protesters not only are saying but what they want. There's an agenda here that's completely different than what we've seen.

CABRERA: It's so powerful. Those images are so powerful and to see the sheer number of people who are united in this message against racism, against injustice, against police brutality and more.

Ryan young, thank you.

[16:25:01]

Thank you for sharing this moment with us.

It is a day of protests all around the country. Chicago, D.C., New York, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, these are all places we've been taking you throughout the past couple of hours.

We will continue to bring you live updates here in the CNN NEWSROOM. Much more just ahead. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CABRERA: Live pictures from Washington, D.C., at this hour. And you can see protesters gathering above the sign, standing on the sign that says, "Black Lives Matter" painted in yellow on the ground there, big gigantic yellow letters.

Earlier this week, the hashtag one million D.C. Saturday was trending on Twitter as people were calling on a million people to come out and protest. Today, we know there are multiple protests and marches happening, so we will check back with our reporters on the ground here shortly.

Meanwhile, in North Carolina, George Floyd's family is mourning his death at a private memorial there today.

[16:20:03]

It's just one of several services to honor the man who tragically died in police custody. And all four officers involved are now charged in that death. But today, there in North Carolina, it's about remembering and celebrating George Floyd's life.

CNN's Dianne Gallagher is on the scene for us.

Dianne, tell us about today's services.

DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, and, Ana, I actually just walked back out here from inside, and look, his relatives said that they wanted to make this about the things that George loved and one of the things that he loved was God and church. And they said that their plan was not just to make this church but in their words, church.

And I tell you, from being inside there, that is exactly what they're doing. His stepmother, Ruby Floyd, just finished going up there, talking about him, and really just getting the entire crowd ready and energized and feeling the spirit.

Now, look, this is going to be a much different service, again, than what we saw on Thursday in Minneapolis. This is for the family. George Floyd was born about 20 miles away from here in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

Raeford is a very small town, fewer than 5,000 people who live in the actual town, but thousands showed up from all over today to come in and pay their respects at the public viewing, where they were able to spend just a few seconds walking by, grieving at the casket of George Floyd, and then coming out and spending time together and discussing what his death meant to the greater community. 9

But this particular memorial service for his family, his sisters are here, I've spoken with them, this is about them celebrating the life that George Floyd led before anybody knew him across the world. The 46 years they had with him before that video came out and his death galvanized a nation and even a world, they're talking about here.

They did have a message for people who have sent their support saying they are grateful. It has made their grief just a little bit easier to know that they feel like perhaps their brother did not die in vain, because they have seen all of the protests, and while they have continued to say they want things to be peaceful, they say they're angry too. They're upset too. And they get it.

There is hope, when you talk to the Floyd family, that perhaps this means that there is some change that will come on the horizon and come out of their brother's death. They spoke about the arrest of the officers involved in his death to me, Ana. They said that they were -- they were glad to see that happen, that potentially if they saw even more serious charges that they would like to see that as well, but today is not about that. Today is about George Floyd and that life he led before he died.

CABRERA: And, Dianne, you know, it's interesting because the memorial service we saw earlier this week in Minnesota, we heard the stories about George Floyd eating mayonnaise and banana sandwiches and playing football with his brother and cousins and giving the best hugs, we heard from other family members.

As you were talking with his sister and other family members there in North Carolina, the state in which he was born, what have you learned about this man and his life?

GALLAGHER: So, I'll give you a memory that his sister Zsa-Zsa, she's the oldest of the Floyd children, what she talked about. She talked about her favorite memory of her brother George was when he was a freshman in high school and trying out for the team and he said no freshman had ever made varsity, and he was going to go out there and he was going to do it. But they were trying to keep him cautious and that he came back after he made the team and he was so proud that his chest popped up, and he was the first freshman to make that varsity team. And they couldn't have been more proud and by his sophomore year, he was a co-captain of the team.

His other sister, LaTonya, said they used to play with him when he was a baby, changing his diapers and chasing him around and go at him like this and stuff like that, and they just talked about him like anybody would talk about their brother who had passed away. Not somebody who has become a symbol for so many people across the country.

And I think we have to remember that. He means so much to so many who have never met him, but to his family, they're grieving their brother, their uncle, their nephew right now, Ana.

CABRERA: Yeah. Dianne Gallagher, thank you for sharing those stories with us, reminding us about who George Floyd was. Let's listen in to the service as we head to break.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We welcome you to the county of Hoke, one of the greatest in the state of North Carolina. And all of our citizens say, thank you for coming to show your love and respect for this family and this great county.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[16:28:57]

CABRERA: Welcome back.

As we continue to monitor protests and marches from coast to coast, we have live images coming to us from San Diego, and, of course, because we can't control these images that are provided by our affiliates, this one from KGTV just moments ago and now we can see again some of the protesters who have taken to the streets on the move again.

This is coming to us live out of San Diego this hour, and I want to bring in former Missouri State Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson. He led the law enforcement response during the 2014 unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, after the police shooting there of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager.

And also with us is retired Major General Spider Marks. And back in 1992, he led the intelligence efforts for the task force that brought military troops to Los Angeles for the riots that came in the wake of the Rodney King beating.

So both of you have such great experience.

And, Captain Johnson, I want to start with you.

[16:30:00]

CABRERA: And I have to say, I was on the ground in Ferguson after the death of Michael Brown. And I remember when you came in and helped to calm and defuse the situation there. There was so much raw pain and anger and just devastation, really.

As somebody who lived through that, and helped lead that community during such a time of crisis, have the last 12 days felt different to you than what came after the death of Michael Brown?

RON JOHNSON, FORMER CAPTAIN, MISSOURI STATE HIGHWAY PATROL: I think the first nine days felt exactly the same and somewhat a greater magnitude. The last three or four days have taken on a different tone. We've seen more diverse groups. But we've also really seen the calmness and the expression of the pain and the change that needs to take place.

CABRERA: So what does that change tell you or that difference tell you?

JOHNSON: That change tells me that a lot of people that were still saying, well, that's -- can't be true. This inequity that we're seeing in the criminal justice system for people of color can't be true.

But I think what we saw with Mr. Floyd, I think everybody that saw that, it put them back and made them rethink their thoughts and see that this is real. It is something that we've got to address. We finally, in this country, have to sit down and address.

And we're seeing people from all walks of life come out and say, this is not right. I didn't really realize the magnitude. And I didn't believe it. So, I think now, they're seeing it. It's helping move a movement.

CABRERA: It's sinking in. People are believing it.

General Marks, we have been talking about the extraordinary number of military and federal law enforcement officials who have descended on Washington, D.C., as we look at some of these images from the protests there today. And we've heard from our reporters on the ground who said they haven't seen such a big military or law enforcement presence.

What lessons did you learn back in 1992 with the L.A. riots that you think could be applied today?

MAJ. GEN. JAMES "SPIDER" MARKS, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Well, first of all, I think it's important that we define that there's no governor that has asked for the implementation of the Insurrection Act. The governors are taking it upon themselves to handle what they see in front of them along with the law enforcement. So I think that's a good thing.

From my experience in the L.A. riots, essentially, there were three things that come to mind. First of all, the law enforcement folks -- and in L.A. at the time, that was LAPD, LASO, sheriff's office, and then we certainly had local FBI, Customs and Border, Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearm, et cetera. So you had this collection of folks who have this amazing experience and familiarity of what takes place on the ground.

So, the very first thing is, they've got the lead. They understand the environment. They understand the human terrain. And they understand the actual terrain.

The second thing is when the military comes in and is employed -- again, it hasn't happened yet in this particular instance -- is the military has this amazing ability to reach back into, for example, in my case, the Intelligence Community.

There are external sources of information that we can tap into that would not necessarily be available to the local folks that helps kind of complete the mosaic of what the picture looks like. And that includes who were the outside agitators, and who might be foreign malign actors that are trying to take advantage of this crisis.

And then really, the third thing is that this is a legal environment. Your best friend in an environment like this is somebody who understands the right-and-left limits of the application of policing, law enforcement, military use, the laws that govern rules that have to be applied in this particular very, very tentative or, excuse me, very tension-filled circumstance.

CABRERA: We are seeing the First Amendment being highlighted today with people taking to the streets, protesting, speaking their words, their truths, and sharing their thoughts.

Captain Johnson, you know, even after all the outcry we saw following George Floyd's death, just in the last few days, we have still seen highly disturbing videos raising questions about police tactics.

And there was video out of Buffalo, New York, that 75-year-old protester being shoved to the ground by police, his head bleeding on the sidewalk as officers pause but then keep walking. Police say he tripped but video, as we can see, showed otherwise.

In Indianapolis, police are also investigating actions of officers who have used batons and pepper balls to subdue this woman. There are many other instances we've seen this week.

What do you say to people, Captain Johnson, who don't understand how these images still exist on the streets of America in the year 2020 and in this week in which so many people have been protesting excessive force of law enforcement?

JOHNSON: It tells you that there's a lot of work to be done. These incidents can't be tolerated. When I saw those, it bothered me to even see those, very much. And then to hear some leaders say they didn't have an issue with it because the guy in Buffalo was an agitator. It doesn't matter.

[16:35:16]

And so, we have to make sure our leaders are holding law enforcement accountable. We have to make sure that, as a country, we hold law enforcement accountable. So, it just shows that we have a long way to go.

And I think we've heard people say, well, it's one bad apple in the barrel. It is a culture that we have to change. And we have to make sure that this isn't just a moment in America, that it is truly a moment for change and it is truly a moment where we speak truth.

Those incidents should not occur. And I'm glad that I have seen in some cities where the action has been quick and swift.

CABRERA: General Marks, I have to ask you about the flood of response and reaction we got this week from more than a dozen prominent former military leaders, who spoke out criticizing Trump's actions over the protest, most notably his former defense secretary, James Mattis, as well as his former chief of staff, John Kelly.

One reaction that really stood out to me was from retired general, John Allen. He said that he even thought President Trump's threats to use military against protesters could be, quote, "the beginning of the end of the American experiment."

Do you agree? MARKS: No. My gosh, I pray that that's not the case. I know John

Allen. He's an incredible thoughtful guy. The American experiment is alive and needs to continue.

The challenge that we saw with the president and then the use of the Insurrection -- the use of the Insurrection Act is for a purpose but it should be used and it has been used in our history very, very rarely. That's how it needs to stand.

And in this particular instance, now is not the time for the institution of the Insurrection Act. People don't impose it unless there's a demand from the states. We certainly have this representative democracy. We have states' rights. We have governors who call the balls and strikes of what's taking place inside their states. We have to respect that.

And what was incredibly troubling that Jim Mattis talked about, the former chairman, Admiral Mullen, talked about, is that you had the secretary of defense, you had the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, walking in clearly what was a political display.

Both of those gentlemen should have immediately done an about face and gotten out of the lane of the pictures and the photo ops that certainly were the intent of that entire march through Lafayette Plaza. Totally inappropriate for both of them.

CABRERA: Captain Johnson, we aren't seeing that sort of image today, at least not yet. And it's early, and hopefully, everything remains peaceful.

But what advice would you give to officers, who are struggling with how to reach out to the community at a time when, you know, they feel maybe they've been villainized?

JOHNSON: I think it's about communication. You know, I'd like, and we've seen that across our country, where officers are talking, reaching out. So I think when we can talk and we can communicate, we show our human side, and I think that that is the way that officers have to do.

And I always say that, like me, I consider myself a man first and I would like them to present themselves as men and women first, fathers and daughters, and present themselves for who they are.

And I think we have to regain that trust. But we have to have people to believe in us again and believe in this profession again. It can be done. It is going to take a lot of hard work. But I would tell them to stay the course.

When they see those actions like we saw in Buffalo, take action. You know, the gentleman laid on the ground and several officers passed him by. Take action and take a stand.

CABRERA: Captain Johnson, I just have to ask, because I think a lot of people wonder, because we have talked about what happened after Michael Brown's shooting in Ferguson, there have been so many comparisons this week to that moment compared to this moment.

Do you know how Ferguson is doing? Have there been improvements to policing in that community?

JOHNSON: Ferguson just elected its first black mayor. They have a black police chief. They have a -- several African-Americans on their board.

And I have gone to some events in Ferguson, and the community is coming out, and they're trying. They're trying to communicate and learn each other better. And so they're trying.

Still a long way to go. But when I see communities trying, it tells me there's hope.

CABRERA: Yes. I think that's important to share that, that progress, because I think people want something that gives them hope in a day like today.

Thank you so much, Captain Ron Johnson, and Major General "Spider" Marks. Always good to talk with you as well.

(CROSSTALK)

CABRERA: Protests continue to happen all across the country right now, from Washington, where you see these live images today, to New York to St. Paul, Minnesota, to San Diego.

[16:40:05]

Our live coverage continues in just a moment. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CABRERA: Welcome back. Straight to Atlanta right now to CNN's Martin Savidge.

And protesters taking a knee there -- Martin?

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They are, Ana. You can see that they've taken a knee right out here in front of Centennial Olympic Park, which is also right in front of CNN Center.

This is the ninth day and it will go into the ninth night of protests here in the city of Atlanta.

But it has been increasingly growing more and more peaceful. Last night, there were no arrests whatsoever. And as a result of that, the curfew that had been in effect that was supposed to start at 8:00 tonight, has been lifted completely. So there's no longer a curfew in the city of Atlanta.

All of this has been done peacefully, as you can see.

I want to introduce you to someone here.

Do me a favor, it's Lakeybra?

[16:45:01]

LAKEYBRA JACKSON, PROTESTER: Lakeybra Jackson.

SAVIDGE: And you are here to represent for your uncle, right?

JACKSON: Yes.

SAVIDGE: Tell me about it.

JACKSON: Yes, he was shot 11 times by Sheriff Michael Filbrig (ph) on August 20 of 1992.

SAVIDGE: So you are here not just to represent your uncle. But you're here 28 years later, this is still going on, police violence.

JACKSON: Yes. And so I'm here to fight to put a end to police brutality.

SAVIDGE: Do you think it will change? After 28 years, you didn't see satisfaction for your uncle. Do you think that this will change?

JACKSON: I'm praying it will change. And I hope I see the change before I leave this world.

SAVIDGE: Yes. You come out every day for this?

JACKSON: No, I don't. This is actually my first day out here.

SAVIDGE: What do you think, looking at this, seeing this crowd, seeing them on their knee?

JACKSON: It's actually emotional to see that we all have to come out here to fight to put an end to this. But I just hope that this right here fixes the issue.

SAVIDGE: It speaks to it.

We're sorry for the loss of your uncle and what you've gone through.

JACKSON: Thank you.

SAVIDGE: So many people here feel that there's a personal connection, either tragically like this, or indirectly through the many names that they have heard.

But, again, in Atlanta, it has increasingly been more and more a peaceful demonstration. They still take over the streets. The authorities are still here. But right now, it is completely peaceful -- Ana?

CABRERA: And, Martin, I think it's interesting that this was the first day that woman you just spoke to, who is turning out for a protest. And I wonder how many more people like that are in the crowd because, so often, we cover protests after traumatic events and you see the numbers start to dwindle. But it seems like the numbers are growing.

SAVIDGE: Right. In fact, she surprised me when she said it was her first time. And that shows you, just as you pointed out, there are a lot of people who are continuing to say, I got to get down there, I got to be a part of this.

So yes, you think, maybe after nine days that people would say, all right, I can't go back and do this again. But instead, there are just new people who realize they're drawn to this effort, this cause, this growing movement, and they want to be here and be a part of it.

And the city right now is saying, there's no curfew, so if they want to stay all night, technically, they probably could.

But the authorities, as I point out, are still down here in force. They're not as obvious out on the streets, but you can see them on the side streets and on the exit ramps and entrance ramps to the highway. So they're ready just in case -- Ana?

CABRERA: All right, Martin Savidge, in Atlanta for us. We'll check back. Thank you, sir.

CNN reporters are spread out all around the country covering protests in many different cities. Our live coverage continues in just a moment. These are live images from New York.

We'll be right back.

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[16:52:24]

CABRERA: Live coverage on the nationwide protest continues right now. And we want to turn to the state where this all began, Minnesota.

And that's where we find CNN's Josh Campbell, in St. Paul, one of the Twin Cities.

Josh, set the scene for us there today.

JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Ana, we're here in St. Paul. And this is one of many protests that we have seen across the country from coast to coast.

But what makes this one different is the location. We're obviously here in the twin cities, not far from the city where George Floyd died after that police encounter.

But this is also important because of the crowd behind us are family members who tell us that they have lost loved ones at the hand of law enforcement.

And I want to introduce to you, this is Ms. Belshia (ph) Perry.

Ms. Perry, thank you so much for talking to us. Your son is one of those who you had told us lost his life in jail.

Can you tell me why you're out here and why you are part of this movement?

BELSHIA (ph) PERRY, PROTESTER: Yes. Well, thank you, first of all, for allowing me to tell my story.

But why I'm out here is because I'm fighting for justice for all mankind. It's not just about George Floyd. George Floyd was the sacrificial lamb that was slain for my son, Hordell, for the Jamar Clarks, for the Philando Castiles, for so many.

And we need to stand together because, if we don't stand for justice and for change now, if we don't get it now, we'll never get it.

CAMPBELL: And what does justice look like to you?

PERRY: Justice looks like to me, where a people, doesn't matter the color of their skin, where they come together for a common law on everyone is -- the creed of everyone is created equal. Let's just start right there.

CAMPBELL: And can you tell us, you know, you're obviously out here, one of many family members. How long are you going to be doing this for?

PERRY: Until we get justice. Until we win. My son's case, other people's cases.

You know, I've told so many people, you know, I didn't sign up for this. I'm an evangelist, not an activist. But I've been pushed into an activism role. So then I have to do what I have to do.

Because the media here didn't really want to, other than FOX 9 News with Paul Bloom, wanted to share our story. We went to five, 11, and we went to the other stations. They didn't want to share the story of what happened to my son because the videos -- the jail surveillance videos are very grotesque and disturbing.

CAMPBELL: Yes, well, thank you for telling your story. And obviously, we'll keep talking about it.

PERRY: Yes, thank you.

CAMPBELL: And obviously, this is a movement that will continue.

PERRY: Yes, it will.

CAMPBELL: So we appreciate your time. Thank you, Ms. Perry.

PERRY: Thank you so much.

CAMPBELL: Thank you so much.

[16:55:00] Ana, this is, again, one of many protests that we have seen from coast to coast. You're hearing from people here that police reform is much more than policy for them. It's very personal -- Ana?

CABRERA: No doubt about it. We have seen change already sparked because of the George Floyd's death in Minneapolis where they voted on some changes, including no chokehold, for example.

Josh Campbell, we'll check back with you. Thank you for bringing us that woman's story and what's happening in St. Paul.

Quick break. We'll be right back.

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[17:00:08]

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.