As images and videos emerged of cops in riot gear clashing with crowds of protestors, some police officers instead joined the movement. Police officers from California to New Jersey were seen kneeling or marching in solidarity with the protesters, denouncing the death of George Floyd and taking a stance against police brutality.
Police Chief Art Acevedo of the Houston Police Department was photographed walking among the crowd of protesters with his arm around a woman during a Justice for George Floyd march on Saturday.
“The death of #GeorgeFloyd should be condemned by all in law enforcement,” Acevedo tweeted two days after his killing. “His death serves as a stark reminder of when bad policing happens, it disproportionately impacts communities of color and poor communities.”
Floyd is originally from Houston and Acevedo has asked the family to allow Houston Police to provide a guard of honor when his body is returned to the city.
“We want to be with y’all for real, so I took my helmet off and laid the batons down,” Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson told a crowd of protesters in Flint, Michigan. Flint Township Police Department later put out a statement saying no arrests were made, and “the protest remained peaceful for the entire duration.”
Police Chief Andy Mills of the Santa Cruz Police took a knee, a form of protest made famous by Colin Kaepernick, amid a gathering in memory of George Floyd. “…taking a knee together in memory of George Floyd & bringing attention to police violence against Black people,” they said in a tweet.
While videos emerged of some NYPD officers allegedly using excessive force against crowds of protesters, several officers in Queens took a knee alongside protesters as they chanted the names of those killed by police violence, including Trayvon Martin and Philando Castile.
In Camden, New Jersey, officers shouted “No justice, no peace” with the crowd and helped protesters hold up a banner that read “Standing in Solidarity.”
"I never thought of anything else, to be honest," Camden County Police Chief Joseph Wysocki told ABC News.