Police sprayed pepper spray at protesting boys, causing outrage 3Police sprayed pepper spray at protesting boys, causing outrage 3

Standing among a group of protesters in downtown Seattle, Washington state, on the afternoon of May 30, Mando Avery held his son’s hand and prayed with members of his three-generation family of African descent.

A few meters away, Evan Hreha, 34, a hair stylist, arrived at the protest alone.

As the boy panicked, screamed, hugged his father, Hreha returned to the moment.

Police sprayed pepper spray at protesting boy causing outrage

The moment Mando Avery’s son panicked after being hit with tear gas from police on May 30.

Video shows angry protesters demanding police explain why they attacked a child with a chemical irritant and did nothing to help.

Shenelle Williams, the boy’s mother, described his scream as `the most painful feeling in the gut`.

`I feel like I failed because I couldn’t protect him, but there was nothing we could have done at the time to prevent the incident,` she said.

The boy was still scared and in pain from the burn on his cheek and asked his parents what they had done to deserve it.

`I would say you guys are targeting my son,` Avery responded when asked what he would tell the police.

What hurt Avery the most was that the officers and emergency medical staff standing a block away did not assist them.

`No police officer, who was paid to protect the people, chose to stand up, break the barrier and run to help this child. I don’t understand how any of them could sleep.`

Police sprayed pepper spray at protesting boys, causing outrage

Mando Avery and his son.

Police violence and arrests of peaceful protesters have become one of the themes of the protests that erupted after the death of George Floyd in May. Protesters were pepper-sprayed, beaten

After the first weekend of protests in Seattle, the city’s office of police accountability (OPA) logged at least 12,000 complaints, the majority involving Avery’s son.

The Avery family said they were also criticized by some online users for bringing their young children to the protest.

The family is working with a lawyer to clarify the situation at the time and what needs to change before deciding on the next step.

`We just want to fight for what is right. In the end, boys will become men and girls will become women. They will eventually have to face racial injustices.`

Avery said their story only serves to emphasize the importance of protests and police reform.

While Hreha’s video attracted thousands of views, he continued to protest.

Despite claiming he did not have a laser and was only handing out sausages, Hreha was still detained for two days and refused bail.

Hreha, a white man, believes this was the police’s way of taking revenge for him spreading the video online.

`The incident somewhat awakened me, breaking the erroneous view in my mind that the police always protect and serve the people,` he said.

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By Jackson

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