Protesters in Rapid City peacefully exercise first amendment
RAPID CITY, S.D. — While protests around the nation have turned violent, the same can not be said for Rapid City.
An estimated 70 people marched from Main Street Square to the courthouse to Memorial Park and back. These protesters, keeping everything on an even keel, even obeying the traffic signals.
“We have very strong community support here in western South Dakota and in our whole state, and we’re very fortunate to have that support, but we work hard at it everyday,” said Deputy Chief Brian Mueller of the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office. “We do not take it for granted and I think that’s part of the reflection of what happened in our community last night.”
Now, with the school year over, many liaison officers who usually patrol the schools are back in the rotation on the force. And with most of the demonstrators being young adults and high school students, many of them know the officers from seeing them at school.
“Both the police department and the sheriff’s office had our school liaison officers out there, and knowing that it was likely that there might be some high school age students or recent graduates, and I think that was helpful,” said Rapid City Police Chief Karl Jegeris. “It really takes away from the anonymity. It’s hard to mistreat somebody that you actually know face to face.
There will be another protest Tuesday night and law enforcement will be there to make sure things don’t get out of hand.