NYC march protests groom's shooting death

Dec. 17, 2006 at 2:53 PM
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NEW YORK, Dec. 17 (UPI) -- Demonstrators crowded New York's Fifth Avenue to protest the 50-bullet barrage that killed a groom during a wedding day confrontation with police.

Nicole Paultre, fiancee of slain Sean Bell, along with Trent Benefield, one of two men who survived the shooting, led an estimated 40,000 marchers. The Rev. Al Sharpton pushed Benefield, who was in a wheelchair recovering from wounds sustained in the Nov. 25 shooting, the New York Post said Sunday.

Also marching were U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., transit union president Roger Toussaint, human rights activist Bianca Jagger, singer Harry Belafonte and Brooklyn police brutality victim Abner Louima.

Sharpton said activists offered a list of reforms in police training and for vice cops. Protesters also called for Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly to step down and for the police involved in the shooting to be jailed.

"We made the point that needed to be made," Sharpton said.

U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., who also marched, said, "We've got to give our police more training."

Protesters collectively counted to 50 to mark the number of shots fired in the confrontation between police and the men on Bell's wedding day.

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