20 demonstrators arrested while blocking traffic along Capital Blvd in protest of controversial bill

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Raleigh police arrested 20 demonstrators who were blocking traffic along Capital Boulevard in downtown Raleigh on Thursday evening.

Wake County Sheriff's Office spokesman Eric Curry said as of Thursday evening 19 people were arrested and taken to the Wake County jail.

Raleigh Police said on social media that "pedestrian and vehicle interference are misdemeanors" and asked demonstrators not to do anything that would impede the flow of foot traffic on the sidewalks or vehicular traffic in the streets.

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Video shows at least four demonstrators being arrested after blocking traffic along Capital Boulevard in downtown Raleigh.



The demonstrators first gathered Monday night, calling for Gov. Roy Cooper to veto Senate Bill 168, which was passed almost unanimously by Democrats and Republicans in the General Assembly. Though it mostly contains language about health regulations and psychiatric care, two lines in the bill gave some cause for concern.



The part of the bill in question would keep the results of investigations of deaths in police custody or in prison confidential until the medical examiner's office is finished with their analysis. While legislators and officials said the language is intended to streamline the investigation process, protesters said they felt the legislation could make it difficult to hold law enforcement officers accountable for those deaths.

"Not only do we feel fearful of the police, we don't trust the police, and if we were behind bars and something were to occur, all that information is private," one demonstrator said Thursday night.

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Video shows at least four demonstrators being arrested after blocking traffic along Capital Boulevard in downtown Raleigh.



In total, 14 people had previously been arrested during the demonstrations. Four people were arrested Tuesday after police said they spray painted the street. Ten people were then arrested Wednesday. According to the Raleigh Police Department, they were arrested for "impeding traffic."
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For the third night, demonstrators continued to block the street outside the Executive Mansion in Raleigh.



Demonstrators said they would stay outside the Executive Mansion until Cooper vetoes the bill.
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