Local News

'Die-in' event at Capitol aims to raise awareness about gun violence

Posted June 12, 2018 4:29 p.m. EDT
Updated June 12, 2018 5:41 p.m. EDT

— Several students gathered Tuesday at Halifax Mall near the state Capitol to participate in a national protest designed to raise awareness about the rising tide of gun violence in the U.S.

Up to two dozen participants heard speeches during a morning event before dropping to the ground for a "die-in" outside the North Carolina General Assembly. Organizers held the event to put pressure on state lawmakers to act on legislation to curb shooting massacres and gun violence.

The event was timed to coincide with National Die-In Day and the second anniversary of the Pulse Nightclub shootings in Orlando, Fla., in which 49 people were killed at a gay nightclub. The attack ranks as one of the worst mass shootings in U.S. history. The gunman was killed by police during a shoot-out at the now-shuttered club.

Student organizers say they held the event to follow up on a march and rally in April that was held at Halifax Mall.

One participant said, in the wake of several high-profile mass shootings at schools in Florida and Texas, that young people should not feel threatened by gun violence while in class.

"Students who were working hard and did what they were supposed to but still ended up shot and still ended up being injured," said Sheel Patel, a graduating senior from Wake County public schools. "So, I'm here speaking out for those who cannot speak. I want to make sure everyone makes it to their graduation day."