Black Lives Matter members protest school bus incident

February 24, 2017 GMT

A handful of members of the group Black Lives Matter Thursday protested outside North Charleston City Hall to demonstrate their concern about the arrest last week of six North Charleston High School students on a school bus.

And another dozen or more attended the City Council meeting, and several of them spoke out about how the situation could have been “de-escalated.”

City police said some students fought each other on the bus, kicked the driver and blocked or attacked officers trying to break up the altercation. They also said they had to use physical force after students grabbed them, ripped off their body-worn cameras and charged at them.

But Jennifer Saunders, one of the people at City Hall, said she thinks the incident could have been handled better. “I read about the incident and I’m really concerned. I think we can find reasonable ways to prevent the school-to-prison pipeline,” she said. “Our children deserve better.”

Local civil rights leaders in the wake of the incident last week said they supported the police.

James Johnson and Charles Tyler, with the National Action Network, and Pastor Thomas Dixon, founder of The Coalition: People United to take Back our Community said that the teens’ actions cannot be tolerated. The praised police for preventing the situation from escalating.