DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado protesters continued demonstrations against police brutality and the death of Minnesota black man George Floyd on Saturday, but the protests in Denver later on were being shut down by authorities in the hours leading up to the city’s 8 p.m. curfew. The city enacted a curfew that will be in effect on Saturday and Sunday nights.
One of the protests in Denver started at the capitol at midday with hundreds of people. Protesters marched around the building and blocked streets at some points.
Protesters became disruptive later in the day, prompting police to fire tear gas and/or pepper balls to disperse the crowds.
Three Denver police officers were seriously injured Saturday night when a car ran into them at 16th Street and Logan Street during a protest. One civilian was also hurt.
Friday night’s protests also turned destructive once it got dark. Even as local activists urged people to remain peaceful, some people late on Friday threw rocks and water bottles at police. Officers attempted to clear the crowds near Colfax Avenue using tear gas and pepper balls. Some protesters even threw Molotov cocktails.
Later in the day on Saturday, there was more violence as police were forced to use non-lethal options to try to clear protesters away before the curfew.
Community leaders say other parties are hijacking the true meaning of the protesting, and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock echoed those statements on Saturday in a news conference.
“Whose life are you honoring when you loot businesses in our city? Businesses already struggling to survive through one of the toughest times imaginable. Something we’ve never seen in this nation and in our city. What change do you inspire by setting a car on fire, throwing rocks at police officers or vandalizing people’s property? When there are agitators with selfish motives and reckless intentions hijacking demonstrations and inciting violence with homemade explosives, rocks, bottles … graffiti and vandalism, our officers will respond to maintain people’s safety, to protect themselves and to protect public and private property,” Hancock said.
Community leaders say other parties are hijacking the true meaning of protesting pic.twitter.com/DzwHxUmeMA
— Dillon Thomas (@DillonMThomas) May 30, 2020
At least 33 people have been arrested over the last two days in the city, including 13 on the first night of rioting.