Anti-violence protesters shut down Chicago freeway during peace march

CHICAGO — Protesters shut down a major Chicago interstate on Saturday in an effort to increase pressure on public officials to address the gun violence that’s claimed hundreds of lives in some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods.

Hundreds and possibly thousands of people, including clergy, residents and community leaders, were expected to join the march along a stretch of Interstate 94 known as the Dan Ryan Expressway, WGN reports.

Illinois State Police, which had warned earlier in the week that any pedestrian entering the expressway would face arrest, said Saturday that protesters would be allowed to march. State and Chicago police along with Illinois Department of Transportation employees will provide a “safety barrier” between motorists and marchers.

The Rev. Michael Pfleger, a Roman Catholic priest and anti-violence activist on the city’s South Side who will lead Saturday’s march, said the protesters will carry a banner with a list of demands. They include: more resources, jobs, better schools and stronger gun laws — things Pfleger says they’ve been seeking for years.

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