On Wednesday evening a group of demonstrators staged a sit-in at Baltimore's City Hall to protest the city's deliberations on the permanent hiring of interim Police Commissioner Kevin Davis.
According to the Associated Press, protesters also wanted a sit-down meeting with Davis and Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. According to a video posted to Twitter, one of the protesters stated that the group had followed the proper protocol to meet with city officials but their requests were ignored. The group refused to leave City Hall until they spoke with city officials. The protesters were demanding a "significant investment in public schools and social services and a promise that police would avoid using armored vehicles and riot gear," AP reports.
According to the news site, some 25 officers converged on City Hall shortly before sunrise. More than a dozen protesters were arrested. Others left voluntarily but were disappointed that they were unable to voice their concerns.
"All we are doing is peacefully demonstrating. We were disrespected by Kevin Davis. He didn't take us seriously," Kevin Wellons, 19, who left the sit-in before arrests were made, told AP.
A City Council committee voted to make Davis the permanent police commissioner Wednesday, but a full council must still approve the vote. Davis took over the reins in an interim position shortly after Anthony Batts, who was police commissioner during the death of Freddie Gray in police custody, was fired.
"The politicians, they failed us today," Kwame Rose, an organizer at the sit-in, told AP. "All [Davis] had to do was come upstairs for 10 minutes. All we wanted was for the commissioner to meet the people he's attacking. And now he's attacking us again."
If Davis' appointment is approved, he will earn $200,000 a year under a contract to run through June of 2020, AP reports.
Read more at the Associated Press.