WKRN News 2

‘Free Capitol Hill’ demonstrators take over Capitol Hill on Friday

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Organizers from several different social justice coalitions arrived at the Tennessee State Capitol on Friday to demand an end to police brutality and ask for social equality.

Protesters voices are only growing louder and more often as they wait for their demands to be met. On Friday afternoon’s protesters stood on what they’re called the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone”.

Organizer Venita Lewis said, “it’s a new day, it’s a new time, it’s a new movement, it’s a new fight and these young people, they’re going to take it.”

Legislative Plaza was also renamed by a group of protesters the “Ida B. Wells Plaza.” Wells was an early leader of the civil rights movement, an investigative journalist, and educator. Wells was also one of the original founders of the NAACP.

Some people gathered at the Capitol set up tents and told News 2’s CB Cotton they planned to stay through the night util they could have a conversation with Governor Bill Lee.

Thousands of protesters have been taking to the streets of Nashville for nearly two weeks now, and they say they’re not going to stop until they see change. Their demands include a more diverse police force here in Metro Nashville and they want them to work closely with the Community Oversight Board.

All across the country, protesters want serious punishments for the officers involved in the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. In Taylor’s case, they want a nationwide ban on ‘No Knock’ warrants.

Protesters on the plaza are expected to stay the night there in what they are calling an ‘autonomous zone.’ News 2 will be out again at Capitol Hill on Saturday where more than 5,000 people are expected to march.

This is a developing story. Stay with News 2 and WKRN.com for updates.


Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of community unrest across Middle Tennessee: