Group seeks law enforcement oversight, bail reform during peaceful Fayetteville march

Cumberland County News

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) — A group of nearly 100 people marched from Fayetteville City Hall to the Market House on Friday.

As they marched downtown, they shouted out for justice and challenged city leaders to do better regarding racism. 

“Behind that color of skin, there is a heart, a body, and a soul that lies within that doesn’t deserve to be beaten or treated like a wild animal or held on the ground gasping for air and help. If only they felt what George Floyd felt,” one girl said at the peaceful protest. 

The protest was organized by Fayetteville PACT. The group wants independent oversight for the Fayetteville Police Department and the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Officer, a better response to COVID-19 in jails, the names of officers under investigation for misconduct, and an end to cash bail.

“I strongly believe mass incarceration is a modern form of slavery today for black Americans,” said Lee Knox, who attended three protests. “I think would be something I would like to see changed and reformed.”

 The group also wants the historic Market House torn down.

“This is where many of the slaves were bought and sold, along with cattle and food. This is why they call it the market place,” said Kimberly Muktarian of Raleigh PACT. “And we just want to be reminded of the significance of why it should come down and why it should no longer be here in the city of Fayetteville.” 

The North Carolina National Guard showed up as the protesters made their way to the Market House.

“They use the U.S. Army to intimidate their own citizens,” said Muktarian. “We pay for them to protect us, not to intimidate us. They should have been walking with us, protecting us.” 

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