No injuries, damage after Sunday night ‘Unity’ car rally in Wichita

Local

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Police say there were no reports of injuries or arrests after a unity car rally in an open intersection of northwest Wichita.

Participants called it a community rally rather than a protest. It included members of the African-American and Hispanic communities of Wichita. At least a hundred people flooded the pavement at Arkansas and 21st Street.

People in attendance circled around the intersection where cars would burn-out their tires or do tight donuts. It was not noticeable if any had signs of protest.

When KSN’s crew got to the scene, police were largely uninvolved. The crowd dispersed on its own after a few hours.

No violence occurred, but at least one TV reporter from another station was harassed by members of the crowd during a live news shot. They flashed obscene hand signs and swarmed the reporter, but he appeared to be OK.

Witnesses told our crew some people were popping fireworks. A woman in attendance, Esme Banuelos, told our crew the gathering had good intentions but devolved into the wrong message.

“What I believe [was] meant to be a good intention event [turned unfavorable] because there wasn’t a solid person who was a leader in all of this,” Banuelos said. “This turned into something [rowdy], and we just don’t want this to be a bad representation of what the Hispanic community is.”

Police told us there were no reports of vandalism associated with the gathering.

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