Stephon Clark Protesters Shut Down Sacramento Kings Game
Protesters let their voices be heard before a Kings game
A group of protesters in Sacramento kept thousands of NBA fans from entering Golden 1 Center — the home arena for the Sacramento Kings — on Thursday night.
The protesters were there protesting the shooting of Stephon Clark, a 22-year-old black man killed by the police in his grandmother’s backyard.
The protesters, who were holding “Black Lives Matter” signs and chanting Stephon Clark’s name, had started earlier in the day at city hall and the Sacramento Police Station. They eventually made their way to the arena — shutting down I-5 in the process. When they got there, the protesters locked arms and formed a chain, blocking people from coming into the arena.
— Liz Kreutz (@ABCLiz) March 23, 2018
— Frances Wang (@FrancesWangTV) March 23, 2018
The Sacramento Kings were playing the Atlanta Hawks. Very few fans were seen in the arena at tip-off — which was about 7:23 pm. (The game was supposed to start at 7:00 pm.
The Kings then locked the door to the arena and released a statement:
Tonight’s game began with a delay. Due to law enforcement being unable to ensure ticketed fans could safely enter the arena, the arena remains closed and we ask fans outside to travel home. We will issue further information soon regarding a refund.
After the game, which was a 105 to 90 win for the Kings, the owner of the team, Vivek Ranadive, addressed the crowd, saying “We at the Kings recognize your people’s ability to protest peacefully, and we respect that.”
Sacramento Kings majority owner Vivek Ranadive’s full statement following the game against the Hawks tonight, after Golden 1 Center was locked-down due to protesting outside. #StephonClark (courtesy: Kings) pic.twitter.com/aGejl6A3cj
— Sean Cunningham (@SeanCunningham) March 23, 2018