TURLOCK, Calif. (KTXL) — Flags, signs and people lined all four corners of the intersection of West Monte Vista Avenue and Geer Road in Turlock Saturday, for a Back the Badge rally.
Jake Shockley, founder of Back the Badge California, organized the rally in response to the ongoing protests across the country against police brutality.
“I’m a big believer in supporting the good officers that back the badge, that wear the badge with honor continue to serve our community, day and night,” Shockley told FOX40. “They always hear of supporters. They never see how big of a support they have. And so that was my goal is to show, physically, a support for them, and every officer that drove by, whether it be CHP, Turlock Sheriff, everybody just cheered him just made him feel good and I’m hoping it touched them.”
He said he understands why people are angry about what happened to George Floyd but says not all cops are bad.
“What happened with those two officers, and what… the group of officers, what they did is unspeakable. It’s not representing though of every law enforcement officer,” said Shockley.
As campaign flags, thin blue line and American flags were waved in the air, more than a hundred supporters, most not wearing masks, braved the heat to show their unwavering support for law enforcement.
Among those in attendance was the wife of fallen Newman officer, Corporal Ronil Singh, who was killed in the line of duty in 2018.
“I’m here to support the law enforcement which they need. After all the riffraff they’ve been getting, I think they need they need our support,” said rally supporter Harprett Singh.
Overall, the demonstration was largely peaceful. While a few drivers shouted expletives at rally goers, they were drowned out by honks of support.
Several rally goers did confront two young women who stood silently among them in protest, holding up a small Black Lives Matter sign together.
“I would feel more comfortable if a person of color was in this position instead of me. I don’t think it’s my place or platform to be speaking on the issue. I just want to be an ally in the situation,” rally protester Kingsley Langley told FOX40.
The back of their sign read “Defund the Police” which is a statement that Back the Badge supporters oppose.
“We want to fund the police. We want to make sure that we have strength. We want to make sure we are safe in our communities,” said Back the Badge supporter Angela Young.
“There’s always room for improvement. There’s always room to restructure things, but, and that’s okay you can do that, but the moment you start taking things away from officers that allows them to protect themselves and protect the community, that’s where I draw the line,” said Shockley.