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Thousands of protesters march to NOPD Headquarters, demonstration ends peacefully

Despite some impassioned comments from speakers and some vulgar language there did not appear to be anything but a peaceful exercise of Constitutional rights

NEW ORLEANS — A few thousand protesters marched from Duncan Plaza near City Hall to the New Orleans Police headquarters one night after a march onto the Crescent City Connection ended with tear gas fired into the crowd.

Thursday night, despite some impassioned comments from speakers and some colorful to vulgar language as they walked, there did not appear to be anything but a peaceful exercise of Constitutional rights.

Speakers started off at Duncan Plaza talking about how they believe black lives haven't been valued and mentioning the names of dozens of black victims of police, including some from New Orleans. 

The scene and event was in contrast to Wednesday night when protesters determined to cross the Crescent City Connection met with police officers who were determined that they would not. 

There was a difference of opinion, even Thursday about who escalated what, but it ended with tear gas canisters dispersing the crowd. 

"We will not tolerate, we will not condone violent protests in the city of New Orleans," said NOPD Superintendent Shaun Ferguson who played videos showing what he said was a large crowd trying to physically push past his line of officers to cross the span.

Brianna Elaine, who live streamed the encounter, admits the group was trying to physically push past the officers, but still said that wasn't reason enough to respond with gas.

"It was a peaceful protest," she said. "Yes we were pushing past the line to try to go across, but we were telling them that our hands were up and we were not armed. I don't think it should have been met with that force."

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The marchers intend to be in the French Quarter Friday night. 

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