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‘I think it was staged’: Protesters march through Louisville faith event, pastor disagrees with demonstration

Over the weekend, a group of protesters were on the ground, in the streets of Louisville...
Over the weekend, a group of protesters were on the ground, in the streets of Louisville demanding answers from the Jackson County Jail following the death of a Louisville mother while she was incarcerated.(WAVE)
Published: Aug. 2, 2021 at 9:01 AM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Over the weekend, a group of protesters were in the streets of Louisville demanding answers from the Jackson County Jail following the death of a Louisville mother while she was incarcerated.

Family and friends of Ta’neasha Chappell joined with Louisville activists on Sunday at the Waterfront. Chappell’s brother, Jeffontae McClain, said he hopes more people join the movement.

“We plan to keep protesting, keep gaining the numbers and demanding answers from Jackson County,” McClain said.

On Saturday, the group marched for hours, their last stop was Fourth Street Live, with a goal to have their message heard.

On Sunday, protesters met at the Waterfront, during a weekend faith event called the Harvest Call. George Whitten, a pastor from Arad, Israel, said he thought the protest was staged.

“Well obviously I think it was staged,” Whitten said. “I mean they come at a certain time.”

Whitten said he and his wife are temporarily staying in Louisville and traveling the nation during the unrest.

“We’ve been stopping at key points where there have been riots when there’s been action,” Whitten described. “We were in Minneapolis days after George Floyd was killed to pray for the city.”

As part of their demonstration, protesters marched through the faith event.

“I don’t think they needed to walk like in front of the stage just my opinion during an event,” Whitten’s wife, Baht, said.

The Whitten’s said they were at the Waterfront on Sunday to share a message of healing and say they don’t agree with the way protesters walked through the event.

“I think there’s a way to do it in a sense that you’re actually changing the dimensions of society for the better,” Whitten added. “Right now, what I’m seeing is a lot of demonstrations took place that is actually trying to divide the country it’s not trying to unify the country. I mean here we are we’re at a prayer event, praying for unity and the protesters are trying to bring division.”

Chris Wells, one of the activists who helped organize the weekend of protests said his group didn’t know a faith event was happening at the Waterfront.

Wells said it was never a goal to ruin the event, he said they walked through the gathering to raise awareness of Ta’neasha’s death and to have their message heard.

Ta’neasha’s sister, Ronesha Murrell, said a protest will be held on Tuesday at the Jackson County Jail.

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