Sioux Falls police issue statement on George Floyd protest: We 'want you to be heard'

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - UPDATE, May 31

George Floyd

The Sioux Falls Police Department has issued a statement on a planned protest for George Floyd, saying it is an opportunity to show how the community and police can respectfully work together.

Sunday's march is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. in support of Floyd, who died in the custody of Minneapolis police earlier this week. His death has sparked protests nationwide, many of which have turned violent.

Organizers of the Sioux Falls march say they plan on meeting in Van Eps Park by the statue of Martin Luther King, then make their way to the Minnehaha County Courthouse, and eventually to the city's police department.

The following is the full statement from Sioux Falls police:

The Sioux Falls Police Department has always prided itself in having a great relationship with the community. This strong relationship has been only established through hard work on both sides. Today will be no exception as we have worked with many community leaders in helping facilitate a protest in reference to George Floyd's tragic death in Minneapolis and making sure it is done safely. We respect your 1st Amendment rights and want to you to be heard. Today is Sioux Falls' opportunity to proudly show the world the great example of how community and police can work together and do things with grace and peace, while respecting all those involved. #OneSiouxFalls

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A march in support of the man killed while in custody of Minneapolis police is being planned for this weekend in Sioux Falls.

The March for George Floyd is scheduled to take place at 5 p.m. Sunday.

Organizers say they plan on meeting in Van Eps Park by the statue of Martin Luther King. They will hear a speaker and then walk north on Dakota Ave and stop at the County Courthouse to hear more speakers before walking north on Main Ave to 3rd St. and occupy the public space around the Police department and listen to final speakers.

They stressed this is a peaceful protest, and are encouraging people to wear masks and bring signs.

More: March for George Floyd Facebook page

Police spokesperson Sam Clemens spoke about a weekend protest in Friday's media briefing, saying police have been in contact with organizers of a planned gathering, though he did not specify which one. Clemens said police do plan on having some officers there, though he stressed they are not meant to intimidate. He said the goal is to keep everyone safe. He added police do not plan on calling in any extra officers this weekend due to the march.

Floyd's death while in police custody was captured on camera, sparking protests in Minneapolis and beyond. Some of those protests have turned violent.