Denver high school students walked out of class for a second day. They're protesting a grand jury's decision not to indict a white police officer in the shooting death of a black 18-year-old in Ferguson, Missouri.
About 500 students from Abraham Lincoln High School marched north on Federal Boulevard to downtown, backing up traffic.
Line of students, police cars is roughly a quarter-mile long. pic.twitter.com/wLTdSaVjLs
— Jesse Aaron Paul (@JesseAPaul) December 4, 2014
"What do we want?" "Justice!" the students chanted at they reached the Capitol.
— Megan Verlee (@CPRverlee) December 4, 2014
Josis Obeda, a junior, helped carry a banner reading “We are Ferguson.”
"I see a cop, I get scared. I shouldn’t get scared. It should be the opposite, I should feel safe," Obeda said.
Alexandria Castanon, a sophomore, marched in her Junior ROTC uniform. She said she respects the police, but is worried that some use excessive force.
"If someone gets caught shoplifting, they should not fear their life. If they run, they should not fear their life," Castanon said.
Buses were sent to pick up the students after the protest. Meanwhile, students from Montbello High School (also known as Noel Community Arts School), George Washington High School and Bruce Randolph Middle School walked out:
— Russell Haythorn (@RussellHaythorn) December 4, 2014
— 7NEWS Denver Channel (@DenverChannel) December 4, 2014
Last week, a grand jury did not charge former Officer Darren Wilson with any criminal acts in the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson earlier this year. Wilson has since resigned from his position.
The grand jury's decision set off waves of protests around the nation. Yesterday, hundreds of East High School students marched down Colfax Avenue in Denver.
At a press conference at East High School on Thursday afternoon, Denver police and school officials said they were organizing a series of community forums. Tom Boasberg, superintendent of the Denver Public Schools, said he was grateful for the student-initiated dialog. But he added that it should happen in schools.
"Our purpose here is to make sure there's learning going on," Boasberg said. "The safest place for our kids is in our schools."
Donalya Bridges, a senior at East, said the idea started with one person and then grew over a period of days.
"Even though we can't go out to Ferguson, and make all the bad stuff go away and make ourselves feel like everything is fine there, we can do this one act," Bridges said. "It was cathartic."
Daryn Fouther, another senior at East, said she and fellow students achieved their goal of raising awareness.
"We only intended to reach maybe 70-75 students. And at first we reached 50, and then we reached 100, and then we reached 1,000, and then we reached a nation," Fouther said. "And I think that's powerful."