Peaceful protestors hold 24-hour rally, calling for justice in Jacob Blake shooting, healing for Kenosha

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Monday, September 28, 2020
24-hour Kenosha rally calls for justice for Jacob Blake, healing for city
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Organizers say the purpose of this rally is as much about justice for Jacob Blake, as it is healing for the city of Kenosha.

KENOSHA, Wis. (WLS) -- A 24-hour rally is underway in Kenosha, Wisconsin Sunday night. Despite the rain, dozens of people are spending the night outside in a call for justice.

Demonstrators are using the marathon rally to call for justice for Jacob Blake after he was shot last month by a Wisconsin police officer.

"We're seeking justice for Jacob and all the 'Little Jakes' in the world," said Rally Sponsor Tanya McLean, with the African Emergency Relief Foundation.

Organizers said the purpose of this rally is also about the need for healing for the city of Kenosha.

RELATED: Jacob Blake Kenosha shooting leaves city recovering, rebuilding 1 month later

The group took over Civic Center Park and held a peaceful protest in the same spot where, just a month ago, violent outbursts took place.

"It's long overdue and so it's very inspiring to see everything kind of finally happening," said Kenosha resident Diamond Hartwell.

RELATED: Kenosha police officer's lawyer says he thought Jacob Blake was kidnapping child after hearing mother's plea

Organizers said each hour of the rally will be marked by different speakers or entertainment.

"It's about peace, it's about unity and about love," McLean said.

In addition, the group is also continuing their calls for the officer who shot Blake to be indicted and fired, as well as for more transparency from city and state leaders investigating the shooting.

"We're trying to set precedent to laws changed, bills changed and legislation," said Blake's uncle Justin.

WARNING: Disturbing video -- Kenosha police shooting caught on video

Last week, the Wisconsin Department of Justice said it was in the "final stages" of the investigation. Once completed, the findings will go to an independent consultant who will review and help prosecutors make a decision on charges.

That consultant is former Madison police chief Noble Wray, who severed as a police reform specialist for the DOJ during the Obama administration.

As for Blake, his uncle said he is getting better but still has a long way to go, adding events like these have helped fuel his recovery.

"He's going to have a long hard road; there is no question about it, but out of that will come change and that's what the Blake family is here to see about," Justin said.

The rally started around noon Sunday.

RELATED: Breonna Taylor decision energizes Kenosha activists demanding justice for Jacob Blake