'I promise you. I love you.' An officer and protester connect during demonstration
ATLANTA - “I promise you. I love you.” That's the promise a white officer made to a black woman at the Atlanta protests -- a promise to get her home safely.
He is the same officer who locked hands with 27-year-old Farees Kaleemah at Sunday’s protest in Atlanta.
Kaleemah believes peaceful protesting and working with the police is the best way to ensure change is made.
“Are there some bad apples in the bunch? Of course, just like in any other group in life, you have bad apples with black people, you have bad apples with white people, every race," Kaleemah said.
Each day since the protests began, Kaleemah has been on the frontlines.
About four years ago, he said he was in his car reading the Bible when an officer told him to get out of the car. He said an officer shot a Taser into his back.
“It enraged me inside. For so long, I said 'I hate police. I can't stand police,'” Kaleemah said. “It made me want to go out there and talk to the people who are enraged like I was to help them get a better understanding. It’s OK to be enraged, but channel your energy the correct way.”
This is part of why locking hands with the officer was so powerful to him.
“If they don’t see moments like that, they’re not going to understand the police are actually with us.”
Kelvin Carey, 20, has also been on the frontlines. He shows the protests live on Instagram each day.
One video captures the moment an officer handcuffs him on the ground and arrests him.
Still, he advocates for peaceful protesting and joining forces with the police.
"They are letting people know that ‘Hey, we’re not all bad. We understand what you are saying. But at the same time we’re just in uniform doing our job because this is how we feed our family,’” Carey said.
And when he saw Kaleemah lock hands with the officer.
“That moment made me cry because that was a sign to show you that the police are coming together with us, that we can walk together in peace," Carey said.