Defund the Police protest & ‘Blue Rally’ draw more than a thousand

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SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News)- Roughly, a thousand to 2,000 people turned out in downtown Salt Lake City on Saturday.

It was for two protests at the City & County Building. The Blue Rally on the State Street side of the building was in support of law enforcement.

It happened while there was a counter rally on the 200 East side.

“If we get rid of the police, or they decide to quit their jobs what are we supposed to do then,” asked Connie Cagle, a Blue Rally Supporter.

“98% are probably great people,” said Don Hantla, also a Blue Rally Supporter. “They’re great people, but anywhere you go you’re going to have a couple bad apples.”

Organizers say the event was in support of the 21 – police officers injured in last month’s protest.

“For me, I’m on this side of the history books,” said Giray Dadali, a Defund Police Supporter. “I’m on the Black Lives Matter side. We all deserve an equal chance to thrive in this world.”

Maya Alcala, a Defund Police supporter adds, “We’re getting the conversation going. We are getting movement and we are getting body cams released.”

At one point, counter protesters made their way over to the Blue Rally while Salt Lake City Police officers moved into keep the peace.

It was before marching down 500 South enroute to the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office. It’s where Bernardo Palacios-Carbajal’s aunt addressed the crowd.

“Sim Gill don’t want to do nothing,” said his aunt. “My lovely Bernardo. He died with more than 30 shots in the back. He run for his life.”

On Friday, DA Sim Gill spoke to ABC4 about Palacios-Carbajal’s case.

“It’s not about what Sim Gill or what the Salt Lake County DA wants to do, it’s about the law as it’s written and what constraints it puts on us,” said Sim Gill, Salt Lake County’s District Attorney. “That’s a valid question to ask, whether those constraints are giving us the outcomes that we desire as a community, consistent with the ideas. If it’s not, we need to change the law and change the policies, but there’s a process to that. Our goal is to call it like we see it based on the law that’s presented and to do our duty, but we are also very mindful of our community’s interest.”

Police body camera footage was released at the beginning of the month.

The footage drew an apology from Mayor Erin Mendenhall to Palacios-Carbajal’s family.

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