PITTSFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Family and friends of a Pittsfield man, who was shot and killed by city police last month, organized a march and demonstration Sunday evening.
Grieving community members gathered in downtown Pittsfield to pay their respects to Miguel Estrella. Estrella was shot and killed by a police officer responding to an emergency call.
The city of Pittsfield closed down roads Sunday afternoon to give marchers a clear path. The march was organized by a local organization, one that Estrella’s mother is a member of.
The organization is demanding the city create a mental health response group, separate from the police. And they want the mayor’s 2023 budget to re-allocate some funding from the police and direct it to mental health services and affordable housing.
22News spoke with Ana Elisa, organizer of Sunday’s “Justice for Miguel” march, about the event’s importance to the community.
“What is so significant about this is that Miguel is so loved by so many and it is impossible to silence us. And we won’t be silenced,” she said.
According the Berkshire DA’s office, Estrella advanced on officers with a knife. When a taser didn’t stop his advance an officer shot twice, and Estrella died from his injuries.
The Berkshire District Attorney’s Office continues to investigate what led to the 22-year-old’s death.