Hundreds rally at peaceful protest Sunday in Myrtle Beach’s Market Common

Grand Strand

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – For the second Sunday in a row, hundreds of protesters demonstrated in Myrtle Beach, pushing for racial justice and policing reforms in the wake of George Floyd’s killing.

The name of the group organizing the rally is called “The Peaceful Protest” and that was exactly their goal on Sunday. Like most of last Sunday’s demonstrations, there were no instances of violence. They began marching at 1 p.m., going through the shopping area of the Market Common district and Grand Park.

Mayor Brenda Bethune and city Police Chief Amy Prock walked in the front of the march. They left when the group returned to the site of speeches and musical performances. Some protesters told News13 they wish the mayor and chief stayed longer, especially to hear what they would like the city to change.

Towards the end of the protest, the demonstrators either lied on the ground or knelt for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. That’s the amount of time former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin had his knee on Floyd’s neck last month. Chauvin has been arrested and charged with second-degree murder.

The organizers behind “The Peaceful Protest” don’t want this to be the last demonstration, saying they’re committed to pushing for more change in the future.

You can read our live blog below with updates, scenes and pictures from Sunday’s protest.

5:30 P.M UPDATE: Sunday’s demonstration has wrapped up following a second, shorter march.

4:30 PM UPDATE: Sunday’s protest in Grand Park continues.

Participants have listened in to many speakers who have addressed the crowd throughout the day.

At around 4:15, a period of silence was held for 8 minutes and 46 seconds, where protesters took a knee and laid down. During that time, part of the video that showed George Floyd dying was played.

2 P.M. UPDATE: The demonstrators are back at Grand Park after marching through Market Common.

Conway high graduate Cecily Hennigan performed a song for the crowd while on top of a hill.

1:30 P.M. UPDATE: What looked to be a few hundred demonstrators marched Sunday in the planned peaceful protest in the Market Common area of Myrtle Beach.

After meeting in Grand Park, the protesters marched through Market Common chanting ‘Black lives matter,’ ‘Hands up, don’t shoot,’ and George Floyd’s name, among other phrases.

City officials helped to lead the march, including Mayor Brenda Bethune and MBPD Chief Amy Prock.

After the march, demonstrators returned to Grand Park where the event is set to continue through the afternoon.

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – A peaceful protest is set for Sunday afternoon in the Market Common area of Myrtle Beach.

The protest is scheduled for 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Grand Park. Organizers say the event is set to feature speakers, a march around Market Common, a moment of silence, a voter registration table and more.

Organizers have been adamant that the demonstration will be a peaceful one, and it will not block businesses, homes, or roads.

They will have blank posters/markers, water stations, three shelters for food and various trash cans placed so trash can be properly discarded. 

“Our mission is to provide a platform where people can peacefully protest their agony, pain, suffering, hate, oppression, sadness, love, hope, compassion, sympathy and change for the system,” organizers posted on a fundraising page for the demonstration. 

The group putting on the event- called The Peaceful Protest- has been working with the city ahead of Sunday.

MBPD Chief Prock said online Friday that the department’s “collective goal is to protect the constitutional and civil rights of the participants and ensuring the safety of everyone as well as the protection of property.”

Last Sunday police made 26 arrests, 19 of them for violating a 6 p.m. curfew. Protesters were met with riot gear shortly after Chief Prock marched with them from the police department down to Plyler Park on the oceanfront.

When asked if officers in riot gear could be expected this Sunday, Chief Prock said it will come down to how well everyone communicates. 

News13 will have complete coverage of the event Sunday afternoon. You can watch it live here too.

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