Five African-American members of the Spirit of the Sit-In Movement Initiative, a group made of current students and graduates of local colleges and universities, were arrested around 7:40 this evening just after the City Council took its 7:30 break.
The students took the seats of the council members during the recess and brought the meeting back to order with the banging of the mayor’s gavel. They began to describe how the current elected officials had failed at their jobs and were not representing the people. Shortly afterwards, a plain clothes officer and members of a private security group approached the seats and asked them to leave. One member of the group, Cherell Brown was arrested at the seats. Also arrested were Wesley Morris, Clarence Bradley Hunt, Carlyle Phillips, and Jonathan Johnson.
About ten minutes after the members of the group were escorted from the Council Chambers the students were asked to leave. Four of them began holding hands and refusing, several armed officers from the Greensboro Police Department arrived to arrest them. The students were arrested without incident and taken across the street to the police department.
The students have attended the last four city council meetings and have addressed issues ranging from a settlement offer to former police chief David Wray, the plight of 39 minority officers suing the city, the injustice related to officer A.J. Blake, the relentless and unwarranted harassment of the Almighty Latin King & Queen Nation, and what they have described as a subculture of corruption in the Greensboro Police Department.
The students plan to continue actions in the coming days. Tomorrow there will be a rally at 3:00pm at the Melvin Municipal Building in downtown Greensboro against police corruption and demanding accountability and justice.