Organizers of Sunday, June 25, 2017 Twin Cities Pride Parade asked the police department to limit participation following the acquittal of police officer Jeronimo Yanez in the death of Castile.
The criticism included a strong statement on Thursday from Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau, the city's first openly gay chief, who expressed her unhappiness and said the decision was hurtful to many officers.
Later, she replied to someone on Twitter who told her not to attend. WCCO-AM reports about 200 protesters began marching down Hennepin Avenue and at one point, staged a die-in.
This year, organizers said, there will be only one unmarked police auto - mandated for safety reasons - at the front of the parade.
The Twin Cities Pride parade is one of the largest celebrations in the LGBT community, typically drawing over 300,000 people each year.
"Unfortunately, we have hurt and offended the LGBTQ police officers, and that was not at all our intent", Baumann said.
Twin Cities Pride Fest leaders on Friday changed course and said they will allow police officers to participate in Sunday's parade.
"It is disappointing", Nash said Wednesday, June 21. Some are LGBTQ officers, while others walked as supporters, Nash said.
"I just think anytime we can have a conversation and understand opposing views, we find out we have a lot more in common than we do different", Harteau said.
Lt. Bob Kroll, president of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, said organizers should be "ashamed" and called the action "disturbing". "With the uptick in terrorist attacks worldwide, this outward anti-police sentiment is alarming". This lead to the pride organizors decision. "But in the wake of the verdict, we want to be sensitive to the population that is grieving ... and seeing those uniforms brings angst and tension and the feeling of unrest". "Make Pride Revolutionary Again!" and "Justice for Philando".
Even before the Castile verdict was announced, Pride organizers had already discussed plans to scale-back the police presence this year compared to the year before. Multiple law enforcement officials were upset and at least one county sheriff's department chose to not march at all.
Twin Cities Pride will also continue to keep communication channels open with all community members to ensure our events and activities that provide a place to foster inclusion, educate and create awareness of issues, and to celebrate our achievements. It was a riot against police brutality against black and POC (people of color) transgender and Queer people.