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COP City Atlanta

Cop City Goes National

As the country’s attention descends on Cop City following a police killing last week, the local stakes should be front of mind.

A DEATH IS a beacon. After police killed an activist protesting a police training facility in Atlanta on Wednesday, vigils sprung up instantly across the country, from Massachusetts to Miami. “This will become another Standing Rock,” said Casey Sharp, an archaeologist who has been helping bridge communications between protesters and local leaders. “There are a lot of locals who are there … but there’s a massive network — Telegram channels, Signal, all these other networks of people from all over the world.” Cop City, the colloquial term for the proposed $90 million, 85-acre police training center in forested land just outside of Atlanta, might have been a local issue two years ago. Over the last few months, activists from around the country have traveled to Atlanta to inhabit the land — called Intrenchment Creek Park, South River Forest, or Weelaunee Forest, depending on who you’re talking to — and to face off against police in an increasingly strident confrontation.

A protester wears a shirt that says “No Cop City” during a candlelight vigil for an eco-activist who was shot and killed in an incident near the site of a proposed Atlanta law enforcement training center on Jan. 18, 2023, in Atlanta, Ga.

Photo: Collin Mayfield/Sipa via AP

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