Cops in Aurora, CO targeted Elijah McClain's violin vigil to make an example out of nonviolent musicians ... so says a famous violinist who saw it all play out.
Lee England Jr. -- who Michael Jordan calls "the Michael Jordan of the violin" -- tells TMZ ... Aurora police made a calculated decision to disrupt the vigil because they knew they had easy targets at a peaceful protest full of musicians and children.
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Lee was one of the musicians who trekked to Aurora to pay respects to Elijah, who died last year while in custody of Aurora PD. Elijah was a big fan of the violin, which is why his Saturday night vigil was serenaded by violinists, who played on even after police showed up in riot gear and unleashed pepper spray.