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Activists Demand Change After Hartford Teen Tased By Officer

HARTFORD–   The force used by a Hartford Police officer when tasering a teenager has been deemed justified, according to the “The Use of Force”...

HARTFORD--   The force used by a Hartford Police officer when tasering a teenager has been deemed justified, according to the "The Use of Force" report released Wednesday.

Community activists held a rally Wednesday evening in response to Detective Shawn Ware shooting 18-year-old Luis Anglero Jr. with a Taser on Aug. 19.

Despite the police report's findings, Anglero's family believe the use of force was not reasonable or necessary.

Close to 100 people from various grassroots organizations and churches, along with community leaders, held a peaceful protest in Hartford Wednesday night. The activists marched on  Main Street in the North End as they made their way to the inside of the Hartford Public Safety Complex.

The group repeatedly chanted "He posed no threat, they tased him" and "Drop those charges now!"

"We want the police department to know we as a community are not sitting well with the fact that Luis was tased," said activist Cornell Lewis.

Anglero was charged with breach of peace and interfering with police during the incident on Garden Street last week. Lewis wants the charges dropped against Anglero.

"He had no weapon, he wasn't attacking the police officer, he was standing there. He didn't appear to be agitating, so what are you justifying?" Lewis said.

The rally made their final stop inside the Hartford Public Safety Complex, where activists read a manifesto of their demands. The activists called for the launch of an independent investigation into the tasing, and called for Detective Ware to face criminal charges relating to using excessive force.

The activists also called for Hartford Police to disclose a list of protocols for every weapon used by the department, along with a comprehensive report of previous Hartford Police Department  incidents involving tasers.

"We want to understand and to see the protocols that are used when an officer needs to determine what kind of force they need to implement," said Rev. Damaris Whittaker, a rally organizer and pastor of the First Church of Christ in Hartford.

Hartford Police Chief James Rovella marched alongside the protesters while maintaining a cunning sense of silence.

Chief Rovella  showed up as a "neutral observer" and said he supported the open communication and exchange of ideas expressed throughout the rally.

"I'm interested in a fair, complete investigation that represents and interests and fairness to both Luis and the officer," Chief Rovella said.

The overall message of the rally, according to organizers, was to have the Hartford Police Department serve the community without using aggression or violence.

Activists also demanded  the police department engage in a public forum to discuss issues of strained relations with the community.

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