One of Black Lives Matter's out leaders, DeRay Mckesson, was among more than 100 people arrested during a peaceful protest in Baton Rouge Saturday night, sending the hashtag #FreeDeray trending.
NBC News reports he was released this afternoon, after Mckesson, who was on the cover of The Advocate earlier this year and is one of the most well known faces in the movement, sparked an online firestorm. Activists feared he would be harmed in jail and urged people to call the Baton Rouge Police Department and demand Mckesson's release.
The protesters had taken to the streets on Saturday night to peacefully rally against the death of Alton Sterling and police brutality. They gathered in front of the Baton Rouge Police Department waving signs, while passing cars honked in support. The protests ended around midnight, when Mckesson and others were arrested for walking along the side of the Airline Highway. They were charged with"simple obstruction of highway commerce."
NBC reports that the police singled out Mckesson, saying: "You with them loud shoes, I see you on the road. If I get close to you you're going to jail. You better keep walking." Mckesson is nearly always seen wearing red Nikes and a blue vest during protests.
Mckesson was live-streaming the event on Periscope. "The police in Baton Rouge have been truly awful tonight," he said. "They've provoked people. They've chased people just for kicks."
Now they're running after folks. https://t.co/wyWyJHcfc7
— deray mckesson (@deray) July 10, 2016
When another protester explained to the police that there were no sidewalks to walk on, Mckesson and others were arrested.
"Don't fight me. Don't fight me," the officer said, according to NBC.
"I'm under arrest, y'all!" Mckesson replied before his video and audio cut out.
Mckesson was then aggresively handcuffed and arrested.