Black Friday Protest Takes Over Downtown Chicago

'Let them just feel the empty cash registers'
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 27, 2015 2:01 PM CST
A protester is silhouetted against Chicago's famed Wrigley Building on Wednesday. Demonstrators protesting the killing of Laquan McDonald took over the Magnificent Mile shopping district on Friday.   (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

(Newser) – Instead of shopping, thousands of demonstrators in Chicago are taking to the streets on Black Friday to protest the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald by a white police officer, as well as the way the city has handled the case, Reuters reports. According to the AP, the largest group of protesters—led by Rev. Jesse Jackson—marched along the city's store-lined Magnificent Mile, stopping for a mass prayer in front of a historic water tower. Protesters chanted "Stop the cover-up, 16 shots" and held signs reading "Stop police terror," Reuters reports. Protesters are demanding the resignation of Chicago's police superintendent and the county's chief prosecutor. "We have watched in anger and disappointment as the city has covered up police violence," a teachers union vice president says.

A smaller group of protesters organized by One Chicago is attempting to halt business along the Magnificent Mile on one of the busiest shopping days of the year, the AP reports. "We want to show them how it's done in Chicago," the Chicago Tribune quotes one protester. "Let them just feel the empty cash registers." Traffic has been blocked in the area, and some stores are locking their doors. According to CBS Chicago, the embattled police superintendent promised not to "allow criminal behavior," "let windows get broken," or "let places get looted" during the demonstrations. And the AP notes protests so far have been peaceful. Officer Jason Van Dyke was charged with murder on Tuesday just before a video allegedly showing him shoot McDonald 16 times was released. (Read more Laquan McDonald stories.)

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