Knoxville police officers walk with neighbors during unity march

Footsteps fill the sidewalk of Martin Luther King Avenue Saturday morning as people in the community walked with a handful of Knoxville Police Officers for a unity march

KNOXVILLE - Footsteps fill the sidewalk of Martin Luther King Avenue Saturday morning as people in the community walked with a handful of Knoxville Police Officers for a unity march. 
 
"Today is really to show unity and show peace and to get to know the officers and for them to get to know the citizens in the community," said the event's organizer Lawrence Williams. 
 
Williams said he came up with the idea not to long ago after he was inspired to connect and get to know officers on a personal level. 
 
"I said chief you know, we need to come together as a community you know how we support one another so that's how this came about," Williams said. 
 
Several officers, including Police Chief David Rausch left the Eternal Life Harvest Center and marched together to the police department, one step at a time
 
People like Glenn Miller, also known as Lefty, took their time to talk and walk. 
 
"That's why I was last. Me and my partner were talking the whole time," Lefty said with a smile. 
 
He said the march was very educational and eye opening. 
 
Chief Rausch agreed. 
 
"It makes a lot of sense. We are building these relationships, those relationships clearly lead to the trust that is absolutely necessary between the police and the community," Rausch said.
 
Rausch took a few moments to tell the group, -- his officers with the Knoxville Police Department are there to serve and protect. 
 
"Anytime, anything that we can do as a police department to be engaged and be involved, we are here for you," he added. 
 
A call to action event has been planned to continue the efforts from the unity march. 
 
A community round table discussion, including Chief Rausch and Clarence Vaughn III, the Executive Director of PARC, will take place November 15 at 6:30 p.m. at the International. 
 
The address is 940 Blackstock Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37921. Anyone is welcome to attend.

(© 2016 WBIR)


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