UPDATED: December 8, 2014 6:27 p.m.
WASHINGTON (WNEW/AP) — Protesters with signs bearing names of black Americans killed by police marched outside the U.S. Capitol and the Justice Department on Monday in peaceful demonstrations demanding a human rights investigation.
Late Monday afternoon, protesters walked on Connecticut Avenue toward DuPont Circle. D.C. police said on the department’s official Twitter feed. Some protesters staged a “die-in,” lying on the sidewalk in cold temperatures, many of them with tape covering their mouths.
The protesters blocked traffic at Connecticut Avenue and L Street in northwest. They were saying in call and response “Show me what democracy looks like. Some carried a sign that says #wecan’tbreathe.
Protesters had staged a 4.5-hour “die-in” in front of the Department of Justice headquarters after going to the Capitol building. The length of the demonstration is the same amount of time that Michael Brown’s body reportedly remained uncovered on the street after he was shot to death by Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri.
A number of protests have been staged around the country following recent grand jury decisions not to indict white police officers in New York and Ferguson, Missouri, over the deaths of unarmed blacks.
Also Monday, the Obama administration issued guidelines that ban federal law enforcement from profiling on the basis of religion, national origin and other characteristics, protocols the Justice Department hopes could be a model for local departments as the nation tackles questions about the role race plays in policing.
The policy, which expands decade-old guidelines established under the Bush administration, was not drafted in response to recent high-profile cases involving the deaths of black individuals at the hands of white police officers. They’re nonetheless being released amid an ongoing national conversation about standards for police use of force, racial justice and the treatment of minorities by law enforcement.
Demonstrators gathered again at the White House around 5 p.m. for another demonstration, WNEW’s John Domen reports.
This story will be updated as more details become available.
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