LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — With Officer Darren Wilson’s resignation from the Ferguson Police force in Missouri, LA civic and civil rights leaders are hoping the city has seen the last of divisive protests.
LA has been embroiled — as have many large cities — in protest following a grand jury decision in Missouri not to charge Wilson with the murder of unarmed teen Michael Brown.
Laurie Perez, reporting for KCAL9 News at 10 p.m. Saturday, said LAPD was hoping with the announcement of Wilson’s resignation the protesters will come back downtown — but this time for a prayer for peace.
She also spoke to Pastor Dr. E. Wayne Gaddis Sr. who is helping to organize the prayer.
He said he understands the frustration that protesters were venting.
“I feel the pain, the anguish that they are dealing with but it’s hurtful to me when we go about it the wrong way,” Gaddis said.
He also praised the LA demonstrators for channeling their anger into positive action and for not being destructive.
Gaddis said it is now time to pray.
“As a man of faith I believe that with much prayer we can plant a seed someone else can water, but God can give the increase and be victorious, over what we are trying to accomplish,” Gaddis said.
LAPD will join with Gaddis and an interfaith team of pastors, rabbis, priests and other faith leaders at a service at 5-6:30 p.m. Sunday. (New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, Los Angeles.)
Police are hoping that protesters and police can meet under different circumstances other than the past week with tensions going back and forth between both groups.
LAPD calls the meeting, a chance “to pray for calm and show our unity in the City of Angels. we stand together to pray for our city and for protesters.”