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Lansing residents clean up downtown after Sunday's protest

 Demonstrators at the Michigan State Capitol protesting the in-custody death of George Floyd on Sunday, May 31, 2020. (WILX)
Demonstrators at the Michigan State Capitol protesting the in-custody death of George Floyd on Sunday, May 31, 2020. (WILX) (WILX)
Published: Jun. 1, 2020 at 9:17 PM EDT
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Around 10 a.m. Monday, Lansing residents joined together to clean their city after a peaceful protest turned violent.

But despite the damages that were made the Lansing community rose above the violence and joined together to clean up the mess.

Over a hundred people came out with brooms and dustpans to pick up debris.

Volunteer Mary Barnes said, "Seeing all of this now is all hope. Hope is what we need."

Local artists showed their creativity.

Ryan Holmes drew flowers over an explicit word written on the city's sidewalk.

He said, "Basically the idea is not to cover up but use art to find a positive to come out of what has happened."

Other artists took to the boarded-up windows of some businesses to draw over them.

One board was painted yellow with the name "Lansing" written in rainbow lettering.

That artist, Jana Nicol said, "It just shows you we got spirit and we love what we do. It's not much but it's better than just a plain piece of plywood."

While people were in high spirits Monday they didn't forget about George Floyd and the reason for the protests around the nation.

Cleanup volunteer Dan Lance said, "We want changes to this systemic problem that allow tragedies to happen far too often and we want to come out here to repair part of our town, and to the reputation of the protesters just because a few people took it too far doesn't undermine what the protest is actually about."

Lansing residents said they stand with the protestors that remain peaceful and protest for change.

But one volunteer was against the protestors that turned Lansing into a violent place Sunday night.

He said damaging property is not going to bring back George Floyd, the man who died after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck.

Michael McKissic the founder of Mikey 23 Foundation said, "Breaking the windows out and things of that nature won't bring the brother back."

"It saddens me because I had to bury a son and his mother had to bury him and I feel her pain. One of the things we wanted to do is say hey breaking windows, burning cars, hurting people that is not the way we try to get things done." McKissic said.

Police say it will cost thousands of dollars to repair the damages.

Copyright 2020 WILX. All rights reserved.

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