A newly formed group calling itself Citizens Affirming All Lives Matter plans to gather Saturday to honor William “Billy” Evans, the former North Adams man who died on duty as a police officer at the U.S. Capitol last week.
Evans was struck and killed by a man who rammed his vehicle into two officers at a barricade outside the building.
NORTH ADAMS — The reason for a vigil this Saturday got its own section, “WHY,” in the release organizer Rinaldo Del Gallo III sent this week: …
An event organizer says people are invited to come to North Adams City Hall at 1 p.m. Saturday.
NORTH ADAMS — The Capitol Police officer killed on Friday was a native of North Adams and a graduate of Drury High School.
A news release from the group said the event intends “to celebrate the life of a Berkshire native who made the ultimate sacrifice while protecting us, and also to protest the race-based hate and hostility to law enforcement that took his life.”
Evans, 41, grew up in North Adams and Clarksburg and attended Drury High School.
Rinaldo Del Gallo III, a Pittsfield attorney organizing the event, said he views the attack that killed Evans as a hate crime, given that it was directed at police.
“There doesn’t appear to be any other motive,” he said in an interview Monday. “We just want to call attention to this and speak against all hate crime.”
He said that the group Citizens Affirming All Lives Matter was formed for the purpose of organizing Saturday’s vigil.
“If demand dictates it goes forward, it will,” Del Gallo said of the group. “It shouldn’t be controversial to be for a colorblind approach to removing all kinds of hate.”
Noah Green, the 25-year-old who rammed the barricade and was shot to death by police, was said to have suffered from delusions and paranoia.
The Associated Press reported that Green had described himself as a follower of the Nation of Islam and its founder, Louis Farrakhan.
Del Gallo said the event might include speakers. It might offer a chance for participants to speak. He called the vigil a tribute to Evans’ service as a police officer “and a protest against all race-based hate crimes, regardless of the race of the perpetrator or race of the victim. The event will also protest senseless anti-police violence.”