Cephus Johnson speaks at the Mobile Justice rally in Oakland, October 2015.

Cephus “Uncle Bobby” Johnson got the call in the afternoon. “You better get your butt down here,” Patrisse Cullors told him. She was standing on a corner of Oakland’s Frank Ogawa Plaza with five activists from London, each of whom had lost a family member to police violence. They were jetlagged and wearing matching T-shirts.…

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As the sun set behind City Hall and the City of Oakland’s official rally came to an end on Thursday night, a few people in black hoodies began weaving throughout the crowd, pulling bandanas up over their faces. What had been a peaceful afternoon demonstration was about to become a chaotic night during which a few violent protesters, mostly people from other cities, vandalized the downtown.

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