Six arrested at Black Lives Matter protest outside Homewood Police Department

Local News

HOMEWOOD, Ala. (WIAT) – Six people were arrested after around a dozen Black Lives Matter protesters gathered outside the Homewood Police Department at 7:00 a.m. Tuesday to protest the death of Kindra Chapman. The protesters chanted that they want answers explaining how Chapman died in her jail cell on July 14.

According to a press release from the Homewood Police Department, the group moved into the intersection of Highway 31 and 29th Avenue South, blocking two lanes of south-bound traffic.

HPD stated that the protesters were repeatedly warned to move out of the roadway, but refused.

40-year-old Erica Brown, of Birmingham; 52-year-old Pam Steele, of Birmingham; 32-year-old Anthony Myles, of Selma; 30-year-old Mercutio Southhall, of Fairfield;  42-year-old Cara Mcclure, of Birmingham; and 31-year-old Sherah Robinson, of Shorterville, were reportedly arrested for disorderly conduct. According to HPD, they were booked and released on $500 bond.

The Homewood Police department released a statement about Chapman’s death on Wednesday, July 15th:

On Tuesday evening, July 14th, at approximately 7:42 PM, a female inmate was found in a jail cell with a bed sheet tied around her neck in an apparent suicide attempt. Homewood jail personnel and Homewood Fire and Rescue immediately began resuscitation efforts and the female was transported by ambulance to Brookwood Medical Center where she was pronounced dead. She has been identified as Kindra Darnell Chapman, age 18. The Jefferson County Coroner was notified and responded to the hospital.

On Tuesday at 7:49 a.m., Homewood Police released a second statement:

The Homewood Police Department has conducted an investigation into the death of Kindra Chapman. All reports, videos and witness statements have been forwarded to the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office for review. Statements regarding the cause and manner of death will be released through the DA’s Office at the conclusion of their review. The members of the Homewood Police Department express our condolences to the family of Miss Chapman.

District Attorney Brandon Falls sent a press release regarding the death of Chapman. In it, Falls states he is prepared to issue a preliminary statement but has been unable to speak with Chapman’s family or any attorneys who represent the family. Fall iterates that he does not feel “it would be appropriate” to release information without speaking with the family.CLICK to view the full press release from Falls here.

Protesters told WIAT they were frustrated that the Homewood Police would not answer “basic questions” about their standard operating procedure. One protestor, who only identified herself as a Concerned Black Citizen, specifically wanted to know why Chapman had a bed sheet in her cell.

At times the protest was very heated between the Homewood officers and the protesters. Officers worked move the group in the sidewalk where they could protest safely. At one point, a motorist and a protester got into a verbal altercation while the motorist asked the group to move so that he could go to work. The motorist eventually had to turn around and find an alternate route.

Some of Chapman’s family members gathered outside the nearby Zoe’s Kitchen to watch the protest. However, they did not participate.

Otis Chapman, Kindra’s cousin said, “I was completely shocked because I was here for a friendly protest. They took this the wrong way to me. Doing all that (yelling) doesn’t solve anything.”

Chapman’s family said that they are grateful that the Black Lives Matter movement cares about Kindra.

Around 10:00 a.m. multiple protesters were arrested. The charges are unclear at this time. Attempts to talk with Homewood Police were unsuccessful.

Homewood Mayor Scott McBrayer says that everyone has the right to protest and that he respects that right. However, McBrayer says he wants to wait until the DA releases their official report before making any comment on the situation.

Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News

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