Vigil, march honors those killed by police

A protester lights the American flag on fire in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A protester lights the American flag on fire in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A woman placed flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. <ins>(Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)</ins>“/></a></figure>



<p>A woman placed flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. (Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)</p>



<figure class=People lit candles at a vigil for victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. (Jordi Molina/ Special to S.F. Examiner)

People lit candles at a vigil for victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. (Jordi Molina/ Special to S.F. Examiner)

Noah Roberts and Keith Pavlik hold up signs at a vigil to honor victims in police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Noah Roberts and Keith Pavlik hold up signs at a vigil to honor victims in police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators shout the names of Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at a vigil at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators shout the names of Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at a vigil at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

The family of Roger Allen hold signs at a vigil to honor him and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

The family of Roger Allen hold signs at a vigil to honor him and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Candles and flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Candles and flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators line up to march from Mission High School to the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators line up to march from Mission High School to the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators confront San Francisco Police officers in riot gear in front of the SFPD station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators confront San Francisco Police officers in riot gear in front of the SFPD station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks directly to San Francisco Police officers about the death of her brother outside SFPD Mission Station. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks directly to San Francisco Police officers about the death of her brother outside SFPD Mission Station. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks about the death of her brother to demonstrators outside the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks about the death of her brother to demonstrators outside the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Protesters hold up signs in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Protesters hold up signs in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A protester lights the American flag on fire in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A protester lights the American flag on fire in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A woman placed flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. <ins>(Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)</ins>“/></a></figure>



<p>A woman placed flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. (Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)</p>



<figure class=People lit candles at a vigil for victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. (Jordi Molina/ Special to S.F. Examiner)

People lit candles at a vigil for victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday. (Jordi Molina/ Special to S.F. Examiner)

Noah Roberts and Keith Pavlik hold up signs at a vigil to honor victims in police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Noah Roberts and Keith Pavlik hold up signs at a vigil to honor victims in police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators shout the names of Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at a vigil at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators shout the names of Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at a vigil at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

The family of Roger Allen hold signs at a vigil to honor him and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

The family of Roger Allen hold signs at a vigil to honor him and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Candles and flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Candles and flowers on a memorial to honor Roger Allen, Daunte Wright and other victims of police killings at Mission High School on Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators line up to march from Mission High School to the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators line up to march from Mission High School to the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators march from Mission High School towards the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators confront San Francisco Police officers in riot gear in front of the SFPD station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Demonstrators confront San Francisco Police officers in riot gear in front of the SFPD station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks directly to San Francisco Police officers about the death of her brother outside SFPD Mission Station. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks directly to San Francisco Police officers about the death of her brother outside SFPD Mission Station. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks about the death of her brother to demonstrators outside the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, talks about the death of her brother to demonstrators outside the San Francisco Police station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Protesters hold up signs in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

Protesters hold up signs in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A protester lights the American flag on fire in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)

A protester lights the American flag on fire in front of the SFPD Station on Valencia Street. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)Next

Crowds gathered outside of Mission High School on Thursday night to denounce police violence and honor the lives of two of the most recent Black men killed by officers.

Roger Allen, a 44-year-old San Francisco native, was shot in the chest and killed by a Daly City Police Officer on April 7, after what authorities have said was a struggle over what officers thought was a firearm. It was actually a replica gun.

Days later, Daunte Wright, 20, was killed by police during a traffic stop in Minneapolis, just miles away from the courthouse where the ongoing trial of Derek Chauvin, the former police officer who killed George Floyd last year, is taking place.

The march also occurred on the day Chicago police released video showing the fatal shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo as he stood with his hands up, fueling widepread horror and outrage.

“I think it’s really important we show up as a community to hold eacxh other in our grief, and also call for defunding and abolishing of the police, prisons and the prison-industrial complex as a whole,” Aditi Joshi, an organizer with Defund SFPD Now, the group hosting the night’s events, said.

Opening remarks from Joshi and others reminded demonstrators that this was a peaceful event, and gave them information on what to do should they be arrested.

But another message was also clear from the night’s organizers, one that called for the defunding of the police as a stopover on the way to abolishing the police force outright.

The premise? That communities keep themselves safe, not law enforcement.

Chants of “we keep us safe!” rippled through the crowd.

Joshi called on the Board of Supervisors, Mayor London Breed and other elected leaders to divest money from law enforcement and redirect it toward social services, housing opportunities and community health, among other things.

“Our budget is a reflection of our values, and our city is choosing to fund violence,” she said.

Roughly a couple hundred people marched down 18th Street, followed by shouts of support from passersby who raised their hands in solidarity, drivers honking their horns and the now-familiar chants of “no justice, no peace.”

They ended at the San Francisco Police Department’s Mission Station, where officers lined the building’s brick exterior, standing behind guard rails and donning helmets.

The crowd gathered in front of the station. Most attendees congregated in the middle of Valencia Street, where chants continued and music played over a loudspeaker.

But some stood closer to the guardrails, directing their comments directly at the officers.

One of those women was Talika Fletcher, Allen’s sister.

“Y’all get to go home. My brother is laying in a morgue right now,” she said, also directing demonstrators to keep their distance to ensure their own safety.

As the night grew later, the crowds slowly dwindled.

Speakers gave rallying cries and shared reflections on their own experiences.

One of those speakers was Maria Cristina Gutierrez, who goes by Mama Cristina. A founder of Mothers on the March, a local organization that seeks to combat police violence, she called for “unity” and “clarity” between all people fighting for a more peaceful future.

“I am sad, but not defeated,” she told the Examiner before her remarks. “We are the givers of life. So we have the duty to fight for life.”

cgraf@sfexaminer.com

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