By CBSMiami.com Team

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As night fell on Little Havana Tuesday, pro-democracy protesters flooded Calle Ocho.

They gathered in front of Café Versailles, a spot famous for dishing discontent.

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“I know what it’s like to starve,” said one demonstrator, who fled Cuba at the age of 5. “We need to give the people what they deserve.”

While the protests have been largely peaceful, some of it spilled over onto the Palmetto Expressway, shutting down traffic for hours.

“If you block freeways, we will not tolerate that,” said Miami Police Chief Art Acevedo, who was in the thick of the demonstrations. “I’m a Cuban refugee, so I sympathize.”

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After taking matters into his own hands, telling a truck driver not to test his tolerance, the chief gave CBS4 his own thoughts on the unfolding crisis in Cuba.

“People are being murdered,” he said. “I hope people appreciate police more when they see what totalitarian governments use their police for.”

After some more pounding of pans, and little kids waving flags, protesters themselves pounded the pavement, marching for the freedom they believe is destined to come.

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“We are here for you Cuba. We love you. Will always stand with you,” a demonstrator said.

CBSMiami.com Team