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Video: Mehserle sentencing reactions, when the news first hit Friday

on November 8, 2010

Former BART police officer Johannes Mehserle was sentenced Friday to two years in prison, including time served, for the fatal shooting of Oscar Grant III. Protesters in front of City Hall voiced their reactions moments after hearing the news to Oakland North.

Hours later, what started as a peaceful rally in Frank Ogawa Plaza spilled onto the streets of downtown Oakland where an estimated 300 to 500 protesters began blocking traffic and jumping onto moving cars.

Law enforcement impeded the protesters’ apparent attempts to make their way to the Fruitvale BART station where 28-year-old Mehserle shot unarmed BART rider Grant on Jan. 1, 2009. The protesters made their way towards Laney College about a mile from downtown and headed past Lake Merritt into East Oakland. The police then put an end to the demonstration at approximately 9 p.m. at Sixth Avenue between East 17th and East 18th streets.

A total of 152 people were arrested Friday night, 56 of whom reside outside of Oakland, according to a release from the Oakland Police Department. Most of the protesters were charged with unlawful assembly. Investigators will be reviewing video and photographs of the night’s events and decide whether additional charges can be filed, police officials say.

Mehserle’s July conviction for involuntary manslaughter and a separate charge of intentionally firing a gun at Grant carried sentencing possibilities that ranged from probation to 14 years in state prison.

Read our past coverage of the Johannes Mehserle trial on Oakland North here.

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  1. Bob Follett on November 8, 2010 at 2:51 pm

    They were two different affairs: a peaceful community expression of anger and frustration with current and certainly past minority-police relations, conducted with dignity, as opposed to an opportunity for some few others to break and destroy. I posted some pictures of the City Hall gathering here:

    • Oakland North Staff on November 8, 2010 at 3:08 pm

      Beautiful photos – thanks Bob for your post!

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