LIVE UPDATES: Demonstrations continue after not guilty verdict in Michael Rosfeld trial

Prayer vigil for justice and healing held in Hill District

PITTSBURGH — A jury has found Michael Rosfeld, a former East Pittsburgh police officer, not guilty of criminal homicide for shooting and killing Antwon Rose.

Reaction has been swift from both sides. Below you will find the latest reaction as it comes in.

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UPDATE 6:30 p.m. Sunday: There is a Prayer Vigil for Justice and Healing at Warren United Methodist Church in the Hills District.

UPDATE 6:00 p.m. Sunday: A group gathered with Antwon Rose's mother on Sunday demanding change.

Chopper 11 flew over the basketball court at Hawkins Village where Rose's mother Michelle Kenney lives.

Our partners from the Trib were on the ground as Kenney told the crowd that was Rose's spot.

Kenney also thanked the crowd for their support.

UPDATE 4:46 p.m. Sunday: Pittsburgh NAACP President Richard A. Stewart Jr. released a statement on the Rosfeld verdict:

The Pittsburgh Chapter of the NAACP extends our heartfelt sympathy to the family and loved ones of Antwon Rose, Jr. and we remain committed to helping his family find justice for their son and to preventing future injustices such as this.
As a retired law enforcement official, spending over 30 years with the Allegheny County Sheriff's Office, I have been personally involved with situations involving dangerous criminals and fugitives with multiple felony records and drug dealers in inner city neighborhoods. I started my career with the City of Pittsburgh where I worked for a year and a half as a police officer.
Yes. There have been times, while in the line of duty, when I had to pull out my weapon, but I never had to fire my weapon at any unarmed individuals.
Former East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld was not justified in shooting and killing Antwon Rose, Jr. Officers are not trained to kill arbitrarily. They are trained to protect and serve and to take a life in the performance of their duties – only if another life is being threatened.
The Pittsburgh Chapter of the NAACP requests all police departments within Allegheny County to provide us with their policies and procedures related to implicit bias, as well as evidence of training related to the same implicit bias.
The Pittsburgh Chapter of the NAACP has a lot more work to do on behalf of our members and the citizens of the City of Pittsburgh. We are dedicated to doing our best to be our best.

UPDATE 1 p.m. Sunday: Hundreds of people have again gathered at Freedom Corner in Pittsburgh's Hill District neighborhood, where religious leaders from several churches are calling for change.


UPDATE 8:20 p.m. Saturday: The demonstration has ended.

Pittsburgh Public Safety said there were no arrests or incidents.

UPDATE 7:30 p.m. Saturday: The demonstration has moved back to Schenley Plaza and all roads in Oakland are back open.

UPDATE 6:44 p.m. Satuday: Fifth Avenue has reopened. Protesters are now at Forbes and Atwood.

UPDATE 6:40 p.m. Saturday: Protesters have now moved onto Forbes Avenue.

Police said they've closed Forbes Avenue as a precaution.


UPDATE 6:35 p.m. Saturday: Protesters have moved onto Fifth Avenue, which is now closed, according to Pittsburgh Public Safety.

UPDATE 6:14 p.m. Saturday: Protesters have move to Fifth and Bigelow. Intersection is blocked and traffic is backed up, according to Pittsburgh Public Safety.

UPDATE 6:00 p.m. Saturday: Protesters have shut down Forbes avenue in Oakland.

UPDATE 5:30 p.m. Saturday: Protests have started back up in Schenley Plaza in Oakland.

UPDATE 5 p.m. Saturday: Pittsburgh Public Safety said the demonstration has ended and was peaceful from start to finish.

UPDATE 4:30 p.m. Saturday: The downtown rally and march ends in Market Square.

UPDATE 4:15 p.m. Saturday: The Armstrong Tunnels have reopened.

UPDATE 4:02 p.m. Saturday: Demonstrators have made their way back to Uptown.

The Armstrong tunnels are currently closed as they move through, according to Pittsburgh Public Safety.

UPDATE 3:51 p.m. Saturday: Demonstrators are blocking streets and intersections in downtown Pittsburgh.

UPDATE 3:04 p.m. Saturday: Demonstrators are moving through downtown Pittsburgh.

Pittsburgh police said they're on the scene to close roads for safety.

UPDATE 2 p.m. Saturday: Stop the Violence Pittsburgh is holding a solidarity service after the verdict.

Channel 11 has a team of reporters that has been covering this trial all week. Watch streaming on the WPXI Now app for Roku, AppleTV and Amazon Fire Stick.

UPDATE 1:43 p.m. Saturday: The Allegheny County District Attorney's office released the following statement:

"As was stated last night, our office disagreed with the verdict and we understand the frustration of everyone who was hoping for and expecting a different outcome.  However, the community needs to realize that when such frustration becomes hateful and violent, there will be ramifications for those involved in that behavior."

UPDATE 12:13 a.m. Saturday: Demonstrators are now going into Mount Ararat Baptist Church.

UPDATE 11:46 p.m.: Protesters continue to march through the streets of East Liberty and Shadyside.

UPDATE 11:05 p.m.: The demonstrators in East Liberty have entered the Hotel Indigo and are chanting "Antwon Rose III" and "Three shots in the back."

Rose family attorney Fred G. Rabner also released a statement reacting to the acquittal.

It goes without saying, our legal team is sick and saddened for Antwon's family, and friends right now. And while we can't undue what has already occurred today in criminal court, I now turn to  Antwon's unyielding supporters and with fire in my heart, I say to you, NOW ITS OUR TURN!
This isn't a complex issue. An officer can not serve as Judge, Jury and Executioner in a matter of seconds, on a street  corner, with nearly no information whatsoever at his disposal. When Officer Rosfeld leveled his gun and fired off three rounds inside of a second into the back of an unarmed, Antwon Rose, who posed no threat whatsoever to Rosfeld or others, he didn't know what if anything was in his pockets; he didn't know what if anything was on his hands; and he certainly didn't know what if anything was hidden under the seats of the car he exited.
Make no mistake, there is nothing reasonable or appropriate about the manner Officer Rosfeld took Antwon's life, and we will unequivocally prove that in Federal Court. With the discovery process at our disposal, I assure you that we will leave no stone unturned.

UPDATE 10:45 p.m.: Demonstrators are moving through the community of East Liberty and blocking at least one intersection. Channel 11 has a team of reporters across the area and will have live coverage on 11 at 11.


UPDATE 10:34 p.m.: Pittsburgh Public Safety has been preparing for the verdict for several weeks. Hundreds of officers have undergone special training since protests last summer stopped traffic on the Parkway and blocked streets downtown.

If demonstrations occur, Pittsburgh Police will be present to assure safety for everyone -- including demonstrators, residents, business owners and visitors to our city.
We know from experience that when Pittsburgh experiences hardships, we come together as a community.

UPDATE: 10:30 p.m.: Lee Merritt, the attorney for Antwon Rose's family, released a full statement  responding to the jury's decision just one hour after it was announced.

"While the family of Antwon Rose is devastated that former officer Michael Rosfeld was acquitted today, they are grateful for the support of the community and from many around the country.
Although the facts of the case seemed clear cut, namely that Antwon Rose was shot in the back as he ran from officer Rosfeld; the jury's verdict was heavily influenced by flaws in current Pennsylvania law that contradict protections afforded citizens by the U.S. Constitution.
Antwon's family and I will be working to change those laws in an effort to prevent other families from suffering a similar disappointment.
We will also focus our efforts on holding those accountable for Antwon's death through our civli suit.
The fight for justice is never easy, but we will make every effort to protect the memory and legacy of Antwon Rose."

UPDATE 10:26 p.m.: Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto sent out a two part statement on Twitter saying his heart is with Antwon Rose's family.

UPDATE 10:11 p.m.: Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala has released a statement saying he disagrees with the verdict but respect's the jury's verdict.

I have always believed that the criminal justice system belongs to the people and the best example of that is when 12 men and women sit in a room and deliberate how best to pass judgement onto one of their peers, indeed that is the foundation on which the entire criminal justice system is built.
While I respectfully disagree with their verdict, it is the people of this commonwealth who decide guilty or not guilty and they have spoken to this matter.
In the interest of justice, we must continue to do our job of bringing charges in situations where charges are appropriate, regardless of the role an individual holds in the community.

UPDATE 9:47 p.m.: Protesters in the streets have started blocking cars in the areas around the courthouse.

UPDATE 9:30 p.m.: Attorneys for both sides have spoken and protesters have taken to the streets. Channel 11's Michele Newell was standing outside the courthouse as a group started chanting.

Rose family attorney Lee Merritt said he disagrees with the way the statute for use of force is written, and he is working with the family as they process the verdict.

"Antwon rose was shot in his back, which killed him. He was unarmed, he did not pose a threat to the officer or to the community. And the verdict today says that that is okay. That that is acceptable behavior from a police officer. And on behalf of the rose family, on behalf of the African American community and lovers of justice we say that is not okay. Obviously, something has to change."

Defense attorney Pat Thomassey praised the jury for their decision and said the Rosfeld family is relieved.

"I don't have any question in my mind that it was the proper verdict. I give this jury a lot of credit. This was a very hard case. you know I would point out to you that this is not an all white jury. There were African Americans on this jury. They listened to the facts they listened to the law and in my opinion they rendered the right verdict."

UPDATE 9:15 p.m.: The jury has just announced a not guilty verdict for Michael Rosfeld.