Columbia has moment of silence for victims of police brutality

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COLUMBIA - MU students and teachers gathered Thursday evening at MU's Speaker's Circle for a moment of silence to honor victims of police brutality.

Kailynd Beck, one of the three students who organized the event, said, "We just decided it was time for Columbia to step up, or at least Mizzou. We tried to get as many people as we could to come out and show their support."

About 200 people showed up to express solidarity for Michael Brown. A Ferguson police officer shot and killed the unarmed 18-year-old on Saturday. Organizers said they wanted to honor all other victims of police brutality.

Many people shared their thoughts and personal experiences with the crowd about police brutality and racial divides.

Marques Williams went to High School in Ferguson, so the situation hits very close to home.

"That could have been me," Williams said.

He went on to talk about how important it is for citizens to speak up for victims.

"While being here is good, talking about this situation does nothing if you leave here and stay quiet," Williams said.

The vigil was part of a national effort called the National Moment of Silence for Victims of Police Brutality.

The idea for the moment of silence spread across social media platforms. Participants posted different hashtags such as #NMOS14 and #DayofRage.

NBC News reported more than 100 cities held ceremonies.