7 Vigils For Alton Sterling You Can Attend To Honor & Remember The Baton Rouge Shooting Victim
On Tuesday, 37-year-old Alton Sterling was shot dead by a police officer outside of a convenient store in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In the day since the shooting, video footage of the incident has come out, the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, and the Baton Rouge community, as well as the rest of the country, has begun the grieving process. As such, several vigils for Sterling have been planned in Louisiana and beyond, showing that Sterling won't be forgotten any time soon.
Sterling was reportedly selling CDs outside of the convenience store when officers approached him. The officers had reportedly been called to the scene after getting complaints about a man — who they mistook for Sterling — who had threatened someone outside the store with a gun. Video from the scene showed the two officers pinning Sterling to the ground before one of them fatally shot the 37-year-old. The incident has reignited the ongoing debate over police brutality and racial tensions throughout the country.
Vigils in honor of Sterling began almost immediately. While the shooting occurred in the early morning hours of Tuesday, mourners gathered outside of the convenience store on Tuesday night to hold a vigil and peaceful protest. According to The Baton Rouge Advocate, the gathering grew to more than 200 people, with those present chanting and holding signs with familiar phrases like, "Black lives matter," and "Justice for Alton." Another vigil was held on Wednesday evening in the same location. Similar demonstrations and vigils likely won't end for several days or weeks. Here are 7 vigils for Sterling that you can attend to show your support for his life and his family:
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Far from Baton Rouge, a vigil is planned in Albuquerque, News Mexico for Thursday at 7 p.m. The vigil, which was promoted by Occupy New Mexico and an organization called United Against Racism, is scheduled to take place outside the bookstore of the University of New Mexico. A separate event is planned for the same date and time in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
On Thursday, a vigil is planned for 8 p.m. on the University of Michigan's campus. Although it's not clear who organized the vigil, the event will take place in what's called the Diag, an open plaza near the center of campus.
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Aside from the large vigils held on Tuesday and Wednesday outside of the convenience store where Sterling was shot, at least two other remembrance events are planned in the city. On Thursday, an informational meeting and sign-making session is planned for 3 p.m. on the campus of Louisiana State University. A formal protest was planned for Sunday afternoon outside of the Baton Rouge Police Department.
A vigil is scheduled for Friday at 8 p.m. on the campus of the University of North Texas. Organized by the university's Black Student Union, the vigil is planned to take place near a gazebo on a plaza called the Library Mall. The Mall is located outside of the Willis Library off West Highland Street.
An African-American community organization in Hardin County, Kentucky, organized a vigil for Sunday to show solidarity with those in Baton Rouge and elsewhere. The vigil is scheduled to take place at a local park near Freeman Lake in Elizabethtown. Organizers plan to allow attendees to recite poetry and say a few words in response to Tuesday's shooting.
The Black Student Union at duPont Manual High School will hold a vigil on Sunday at 5 p.m. in Louisville. The vigil will take place at the Carl Braden Memorial Center, just about four miles from the high school. The Braden center is an important local landmark honoring a former civil rights leader.
Vancouver, British Columbia
Beyond the U.S., a vigil was planned in Vancouver, Canada, for Sunday at 5:30 p.m. The vigil would take place at the Vancouver Art Gallery. The location had reportedly been changed from an earlier venue to accommodate more people in the wake of a significant public response.
Aside from the large gathering in Baton Rouge on Wednesday, vigils took place elsewhere, including Charlotte, North Carolina, and Indianapolis, Indiana. Across the country, vigil-goers and concerned citizens alike mourned the death of Sterling, a father of five. Although some details about Tuesday's shooting had yet to emerge on Wednesday night, it was clear that the subsequent demonstrations were far from over.