York neighbors march to "Stop the Violence"

York Stop the Violence March

YORK, SC (WBTV) - In the nearly two weeks since officer-involved shootings killed Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, communities throughout the country have taken part in marches, protests and other demonstrations. On Sunday, York, S.C., neighbors marched, with hopes of stopping the violence.

The event was called the Stop the Violence March. Neighbors walked down the streets of downtown York, holding signs with the names of victims of violence, chanting, "No justice, no peace."

The march was originally supposed to be a Black Lives Matter event. There were still many supporters of the movement at the march, but after the recent shooting deaths of police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, many people were there to take more of a stance against violence in general.

"The incidents that happened in Louisiana doesn't mean the ones you are killing had anything to do with what happened," said Vanessa Gwinn, one of the marchers.

People at the event say they hop this begins a conversation between the community and police.

"The collaboration between the police and the movement, that's probably my biggest thing, that it's not something you have to be on one side or the other," said Nate Williams.

York Police Chief Andy Robinson agrees there needs to be more communication with citizens. Not only were police officers at the march blocking off roads and protecting people, they took part in it.

"Anything that anyone can do to help us address the violence in our community, to make this a safer place, a better place to live, we're all for," Robinson said.

The next step marchers want to take is putting a plan into action, to bring about change.

"Whether you're black or white, we all are somebody in the eyesight of the lord. We're marching to bring peace, love, unity to the community," Gwinn said.

Even after the shooting deaths of the police officers in Baton Rouge, Robinson says there were never any discussions to cancel the march. He expected the march to be peaceful.

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