x
Breaking News
More () »

Louisville's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Louisville, Kentucky | WHAS11.com

Groups protest a militarized police force

A crowd of people from organizations like Veterans for Peace and Black Lives Matter were standing up for what they believe along Main Street in Downtown Louisville on Wednesday night, protesting the militarization of police. 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A crowd of people from organizations like Veterans for Peace and Black Lives Matter were standing up for what they believe along Main Street in Downtown Louisville on Wednesday night, protesting the militarization of police.

"I know the idea is, it's trying to make people feel safe, but when I see people who look like storm troopers, that does not make me feel safe," Steven Gardiner of Veterans for Peace said.

When he said storm troopers, he's referring to those SWAT uniforms with helmets and shields; and he's afraid the National Tactical Officers Association promotes just that.

"This is supposed to be our police force, we are not anti-police, we are anti-militarization of police, we are anti-police brutality, we are pro safe communities," Gardiner said.

People at the National Tactical Officers Association Conference wouldn't talk to WHAS11, but we looked at their website which said their mission is, in part "to improve public safety and domestic security through training, education and tactical excellence."

The SWAT organization works with 40,000 members across the nation in a variety of fields from patrol, to crisis negotiations to sniper and explosives.

"Resources could be better spent elsewhere if we're really talking about having peace in our community," Gardiner said.