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City-mandated curfew leads to quieter night in Detroit

Following two nights of protests in Detroit over the police killing of George Floyd, where police released tear gas on protesters in attempts to divide and separate the crowd, a mandated curfew seemed to help quell activity in the city on Sunday evening.

Michigan Radio's News Director Vincent Duffy and Reporter Lester Graham were in downtown Detroit Sunday evening after the curfew went into effect at 8 p.m.

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Credit Lester Graham / Michigan Radio
Protesters in standoff with Detroit police.

According to Duffy, who livestreamed what he saw this evening via Facebook, the crowd size was much smaller than previous evenings, but the police presence on the streets was sizable. As in previous evenings, officers fired tear gas in an attempt to break up what crowds existed. Officers then marched downtown, first in a major formation, and then broke into smaller groups.

With the curfew beginning at 8 p.m. and not set to lift until 5 a.m., officers approached those outside, demanding that they go home. If they refused, officers detained them and arrested them. 

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Credit Lester Graham / Michigan Radio
Police preparing to disperse protesters.

While Duffy says he saw one protester throw a plastic bottle of water at officers marching on Broadway, there was significantly less vandalism and violence than previous evenings. Whereas previous events lasted into the morning hours, Duffy says he left around 10 p.m. and the only people left on the streets were police officers and some members of the media.

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Credit Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

While curfews seemed to calm situations in Detroit, protests in Lansing delved into destruction of property, including smashing windows at Chase Bank, the Boji Tower, Romney Building, and several small businesses in downtown Lansing. The city of Lansing announced a 9 p.m. curfew as tensions escalated.

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