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Civil Rights Activists To Protest, March In Phoenix Friday

(Photo by Casey Kuhn - KJZZ)
Jarrett Maupin explaining protest plans to media.

A protest Friday night after two African American men were shot and killed by police this week is going forward. Local law enforcement and Phoenix leaders have asked the organizer to reschedule, citing poor timing and a lack of planning.

Local civil rights activist Jarrett Maupin is leading the protest which is scheduled to start at 8 p.m. in front of Phoenix City Hall.

Maupin, when asked whether he would consider rescheduling, said he thinks the protest is appropriate timing.

“I spoke to Chief Yahner and I think we found some common ground on how to move forward," Maupin said. "He certainly disagreed with the protest, but then again we have decided a long time ago to agree to disagree.”

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and Police Chief Joseph Yahner addressed the media Friday afternoon, offering condolences about five officers killed in Dallas Thursday, and the two black men killed by police.

Yahner urged the protestors to reconsider marching Friday night.

“You know we can do it next Wednesday, you can do it next Friday. We can have time to plan for it. We can work together so it’s a more successful event," Yahner said. "It’s just very quickly done. We’re concerned about it and the answer is yes, I wish it was postponed.”

Stanton said the priority is safety.

“This chief has the full support of myself and the members of the council standing behind you and all council members to give them all the resources that they need to make sure that protest, that event goes on as safely as possible,” Stanton said.

A pastor who spoke with Stanton read a letter from the Arizona Black Lives Matter leader saying this protest was not sanctioned by their group.

The protest is scheduled to start at 8 p.m. at City Hall, move to the Phoenix Police Headquarters and end in the Roosevelt neighborhood.

Casey Kuhn reports from KJZZ’s West Valley Bureau. She comes to Phoenix from the Midwest, where she graduated from Indiana University with a degree in journalism.Kuhn got her start in radio reporting in college at the community public radio station, WFHB. She volunteered there as a reporter and worked her way up to host the half-hour, daily news show. After graduating, she became a multimedia reporter at Bloomington's NPR/PBS station WFIU/WTIU, where she reported for and produced a weekly statewide news television show.Since moving to the Southwest, she’s discovered a passion for reporting on rural issues, agriculture and the diverse people who make up her community.Kuhn was born and raised in Cincinnati, where her parents instilled in her a love of baseball, dogs and good German beer. You’ll most likely find her around the Valley with a glass of prosecco in one hand and a graphic novel in the other.She finds the most compelling stories come from KJZZ’s listeners.