Photos: San Diego demonstrators raise their voices to protest police violence

A week of protests throughout San Diego County over the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer was capped Saturday with more demonstrations calling for law enforcement and other government institutions to change how they treat African Americans and all people of color. 

“This is not a moment. This is a movement,” one man shouted into a microphone, as a large crowd estimated in the thousands blocked the intersection of University Avenue and Normal Street in Hillcrest around 1 p.m.

It was one of several protests in the county, including a caravan of hundreds of cars organized by Black Lives Matter San Diego.

inewsource followed protesters that marched at least 12 miles from Hillcrest, into downtown, past the San Diego International Airport, to Liberty Station and finally back down Pacific Highway to the San Diego County Administration Building. 

At times, the demonstrators shouted the names of African Americans killed by police — Floyd; Breonna Taylor, shot at her Louisville, Kentucky, home in March; and Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old Cleveland boy shot while playing with a toy gun in 2014.

And they chanted, “I can’t breathe!” ― the final words of Floyd as well as Eric Garner, who died in 2014 after New York police used a chokehold while trying to arrest him on Staten Island.

Throughout the march, police officers provided an escort, at one point stopping the crowd to ensure the roads ahead would be blocked for their safety. 

Along the way, people walked outside their homes and workplaces to show support. Some left their cars while blocked in traffic to take video and cheer on the crowd. Others honked their horns in solidarity.

Chants of “keep going” and “this movement is bigger than us” spurred the crowd to keep marching in the heat. The high reached 71 at the airport Saturday.

By around 4 p.m., when the protesters reached Rosecrans Street at Liberty Station, the group’s numbers had dwindled. The several dozen who remained sat down and blocked the northbound lanes for eight minutes and 46 seconds, the amount of time a Minneapolis police officer pressed a knee on Floyd’s neck before he died.

Meanwhile, some protesters finished their march at the County Administration Building, where California National Guard troops and county sheriff’s deputies stood watch. 

As with the group on Rosecrans Street, this one observed eight minutes and 46 seconds of silence. The protesters sat or kneeled, with many raising their fists.

Thousands gather in Hillcrest near the Pride Flag after marching from the Waterfront Park by San Diego Bay to protest the police killing of George Floyd and other black men and women, June 6, 2020. The group later returned to the park. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

A band plays under the Hillcrest Pride Flag after thousands of protesters marched there from the Waterfront Park on San Diego Bay, June 6, 2020. The group later returned to the park. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Protesters stop in Hillcrest to re-tape signs with the names of men and women killed by police, June 6, 2020. They believed the signs had been torn down. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Tony Knight, manager of Hillcrest Pawn, watches as protesters march down Sixth Avenue, June 6, 2020. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Protesters gather at Waterfront Park on San Diego Bay to listen to speakers, June 6, 2020. It was part of demonstrations throughout the county and the nation to protest the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Children attending a Black Lives Matter protest with their families play in fountains at the Waterfront Park in San Diego, June 6, 2020. California National Guard troops are shown in the background. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Jakobi Johnson, 9, plays in the fountains at the Waterfront Park in San Diego during protests over the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police, June 6, 2020. Jakobi was at the protest with his family. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Hundreds of demonstrators protest outside of the San Diego County Administration Building over the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police, June 6, 2020. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Tyhara Tyrell leads chants with demonstrators for several minutes outside the San Diego County Administration Building to protest the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police, June 6, 2020. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

California National Guard troops stand on the steps of the Hall of Justice as a San Diego protest over the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police walks down Broadway, June 6, 2020. Homeless residents are lying near the entry to the building. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

A protest over the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police marches through San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter, June 6, 2020. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

Demonstrators protesting the killing of George Floyd and other black men and women by police walk by the San Diego Convention Center where police were standing guard, June 6, 2020. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)

A group of protesters ends their march through downtown San Diego with a moment of silence for eight minutes and 46 seconds to mark the amount of time a Minneapolis police officer used his knee to hold George Floyd to the ground, June 6, 2020. California National Guard troops and San Diego County sheriff’s deputies look on from the County Administration Building. (Zoë Meyers/inewsource)
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About Cody Dulaney:

Cody Dulaney
Cody Dulaney is an investigative reporter at inewsource. To contact him with tips, suggestions or corrections, please email codydulaney [at] inewsource [dot] org.

About Zoë Meyers:

Zoë Meyers
Zoë Meyers is a photo and video journalist at inewsource. To contact her with tips, suggestions or corrections, please email zoemeyers [at] inewsource [dot] org.