Miami students walk out to protest teen shooting
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (WSVN) -- Students from Miami Carol City High walked out of class and into the street, Thursday afternoon, to protest the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.
Nearly the entire student body walked out of class with permission from the principal. He thought they would stay outside school, but they instead poured out into the streets, blocking streets. Miami-Dade School Board Police and Miami Gardens Police followed the students in motorcycles and police cruisers to assist in blocking the streets near the school, so they might march safely. They later returned to class to finish the day.
Some of the students personally knew Martin, as he went to Carol City last year. The students left the school, located at Northwest 34th Avenue and 187th Street, around noon, Thursday, during their lunch break. Dozens walked into the streets, among cars, stopping traffic. Some carried signs and chanted, "We Want Justice! We Want Justice!"
The students said the march was to show support of 17-year-old Martin, who was shot dead in Central Florida, on Feb. 26, while visiting his father in the small town of Sanford. A volunteer community watch captain is alleged to have shot the unarmed teen, as he was walking home from the store. "It really hurt us because it could have been us," said student D'alyn Eiland. "It could have been us lying on the ground face down."
The Police have not arrested the alleged shooter, 28-year-old George Zimmerman, a white Hispanic, because, they have determined, Zimmerman fired in self-defense. The action by police has since sparked nationwide protests. "It happened because we all walked out of class," said one sophomore about the protest march. "We thought we would get justice for Trayvon, and an arrest has to be made."
Marcus Smith, one of the students who participated in the protest, said, "We would have done this for anyone else. It's not a black and white thing. He was innocent, and he deserves justice."
"There's been a lot of outrage that has been expressed and rightfully so," said John Schuster, spokesperson for the Miami-Dade School District. "This is terrible. This is the death of a student. This is one of our students. It's deeply impacted this community, and we're see reaction on all levels."
Meanwhile, at Miami Northwestern Sr. High, students held a protest indoors. They gathered in a courtyard, sung songs, held speeches and bonded together for the deceased. They also wore hoodies, like Martin wore on the night he was shot while walking in the rain.
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