MIAMI (CBSMiami) – While some of the demonstrations turned violent on Saturday night, there were also powerful moments of unity.

In Coral Gables, an afternoon of hundreds peacefully protesting included a question-and-answer session with police, and concluded with a moment of prayer.

Images of demonstrators and police kneeling down with heads bowed was one way of standing up against racism.

The Miami-Dade Chiefs of Police Association, in an act of solidarity with protesters, took a knee while someone led the group in prayer.

The demonstrators, speaking out against the death of George Floyd, held signs, chanting “Black lives matter!” As well as “No justice, no peace. No racist police.”

“That could be my father,” says one of the men there. “That could be my brother. That could be anybody, to be honest. And even if it’s not putting yourself directly in that person’s shoes, you just have to feel empathy for that person going through that, simply because he was black.”

“You don’t have to be black to be mad,” says a woman in attendance. “You just have to be a human being, and that’s what this is showing.”

The police chiefs in Miami-Dade answered questions and addressed the crowd.

“These gentlemen behind me stand for bringing justice, just like you’re asking for,” says Key Biscayne Chief of Police Charles Press.

It all ended with the moving moment of hundreds praying together, united with heavy hearts and a desire for change.

Coral Gables Police Chief Ed Hudak says he and the organizers of the protest will continue talks this week though Zoom to keep the dialogue going. The chiefs of police acknowledged the need for better training and reviewing protocols.

Karli Barnett

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