Dozens of people gathered in Santa Rosa on Tuesday to publicly condemn the decision to not prosecute a sheriff's deputy who shot and killed a 13-year-old boy who was carrying a replica AK-47 assault rifle.
Prosecutors this week announced that Deputy Erick Gelhaus will not face charges in the death of Andy Lopez, prompting outcry, a protest march and, on Tuesday, a demonstration outside the Sonoma County district attorney's office.
Jonathan Melrod, an organizer for the Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez, told the Santa Rosa Press Deomcrat that the lower turnout was a result of Dist. Atty. Jill Ravitch taking so long to reach a decision in the controversial case.
"One of the effects of this going on for nine months is to dissipate the energy of the community," he said.
Gelhaus reportedly saw Andy walking in the area with the replica AK-47 at his side and asked him to drop the weapon.
But Andy reportedly turned toward Gelhaus and his partner and began walking toward them.
Fearing for his life, prosecutors said Gelhaus fired at Andy, who was shot seven times, including in the chest and abdomen.
Ravitch's office on Monday also released a report that concluded Andy was probably high from marijuana during the deadly encounter.