Decatur Police respond to calls about protests during Sunday brunch

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt March 23, 2015
Photo of BlackBrunchATL protests obtained via Twitter.

Photo of BlackBrunchATL protests obtained via Twitter.

Activists protesting recent shootings of black suspects by police officers decided on Sunday to storm local restaurants to air their grievances during brunch.

The business owners responded by calling the police.

Protesters entered Sweet Melissa’s, Leon’s, Cafe 246 and Victory Sandwich. As patrons looked on, some filming, some baffled, managers tried to hustle the protesters out of the door.

The protesters documented their exploits via social media, and chided people who were annoyed by their strategy.

“Sweet Melissa’s did not enjoy . Lots of hateful words,” one protester wrote on Twitter. Another accused one of the restaurants of routinely mistreating black patrons.

None of the shootings cited by protesters occurred in the city of Decatur or involved Decatur Police officers.

Decatur Mayor Jim Baskett told Decaturish that the city welcomes protests, but said protesters do not have the right to enter private businesses, uninvited, and create a disruption.

“Our police officers have responded appropriately and professionally by instructing protesters that they cannot protest on private property without permission from the owner. Further, that they can protest on public sidewalks as long as they do not obstruct others from using the sidewalks. If  they want to have a parade they would need to secure a permit,” Baskett said. “In the future we would hope that if these individuals are interested in making a statement to DeKalb County that they would choose a venue more closely associated with the county.”

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