GRIEVING COLUMBIA

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COLUMBIA - A "grieve-in" took place Friday night at the Wilkes Boulevard United Methodist Church in response to the shooting deaths of Philando Castile in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

More than 100 people from across the city attended the event. Speakers gave passionate talks as people grieved over the past few days.

"I don't want to have another vigil or a moment of silence. I'm tired of being silent. This is not a vigil. I'm not gonna stand silently in the face of terrorism," speaker Rachel Taylor said.

"Why do we have to wait for something tragic to happen, for us to say 'yes, there is a problem'," outreach specialist Nikki McGruder added.

Also in Columbia on Friday, flowers, a balloon and a note were placed on the steps of the Columbia Police Department's offices in the wake of the Dallas police shootings. The note read "Thank you for all you do each and every day. God bless our law enforcement personnel and their families."

The CPD announced that it will hold a joint press conference with the local chapter of the NAACP Saturday morning at 10 a.m. at the Columbia City Council Chambers.

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