Eric Garner prayer rally held in Freeport

Hundreds of people gathered Tuesday at a Freeport church to pray for change in the wake of the grand jury's decision not to indict an NYPD officer in the chokehold death of Eric Garner. About 200 people

News 12 Staff

Dec 10, 2014, 9:06 AM

Updated 3,448 days ago

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Eric Garner prayer rally held in Freeport
Hundreds of people gathered Tuesday at a Freeport church to pray for change in the wake of the grand jury's decision not to indict an NYPD officer in the chokehold death of Eric Garner.
About 200 people attended the service at Perfecting Faith Church, which is led by gospel musician and Pastor Donnie McClurkin.
McClurkin said his church is calling for peaceful change. "Anything that gets out of control -- the looting, violence that erupts -- it takes the attention away from the real situations," he said.
Some protests in Manhattan have become violent.
Members of the Perfecting Faith Church said they are frustrated with the grand jury's decision, but they will remain peaceful. "This is not a black and white issue," said Athelene Collins, of Hempstead. "It's human beings in this country."
Churchgoer Maureen Bell agreed. "I'm very concerned as a parent, as a mom," she said. "I'm here tonight because I believe there needs to be change."
Freeport Police Chief Miguel Bermudez accepted McClurkin's invitation to attend Tuesday's rally. "It's important to reach out to the community, to be transparent and share our experiences," said Bermudez.
McClurkin also offered words of support to police officers who he said are doing their jobs and being fair with the public.
Some of the Perfecting Faith Church members will be attending a planned rally in Washington, D.C., Saturday, but McClurkin said they won't be chanting "No justice, no peace."
McClurkin said there must be peace at all costs.


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