More than 100 protesters were arrested in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Saturday night during a demonstration that broke out in the city’s streets. Now, one organization is working to help bail them out of jail.
The Louisiana National Lawyers Guild launched a Crowdrise campaign early Sunday morning to raise money and help cover legal expenses of protesters behind bars. Many demonstrators took over the streets and marched on highways to demand justice in the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.
More than 1,500 people have donated to the fund and it has raised more than $75,000 as of Sunday afternoon. Their goal is to reach $300,000.
“Since Friday, July 8, more than 60 people have been arrested in protests against the killing of Alton Sterling,” a statement of the campaign’s site reads. “This is a bail fund to get those protestors out of jail.”
The number of protesters who have been taken into custody has jumped since Friday to 102. Prominent activist Deray McKesson was among those arrested Saturday night in a chilling moment that he captured on camera. Police later charged him with “simple obstruction of highway commerce” after warning him not to get close to police. However, those who were with him say he did nothing wrong.
McKesson was reportedly held in custody along with 33 others while police continued to detain dozens of protesters from other areas of the demonstration. His bail has not yet been set, Quartz reported.
Brittany Packnett, another prominent activist who marched directly behind McKesson, picked up his phone and continued to live-stream the aftermath of his arrest.
“He was standing on the side of the road. He was not disobeying police officers whatsoever. He was snatched and grabbed,” she says. “Start calling the Baton Rouge Police Department to demand that he’s released.”
Many promptly followed her instructions and shared information on how to contact the Baton Rouge police. The Louisiana lawyers’ guild created the Crowdrise campaign to help with next steps for the countless protesters who are still detained.
“Call our legal hotline at (225) 341-2287 with any questions about this page or legal support for protesters,” it says on their page.
To find out more on how to donate, click below.