More than 80 people were arrested in Denver on Saturday night for violating the 8 p.m. emergency curfew imposed by Mayor Michael Hancock, a police spokesman said.
Eighty-three people were arrested on charges of violating curfew, Denver police spokesman Kurt Barnes said, and one protester was arrested before the curfew went into effect. Barnes was not sure what prompted that earlier arrest.
Of the 83 people arrested on suspicion of violating curfew, a few also face charges of throwing missiles, damaging property and handling weapons, Barnes said. He did not have an exact number immediately available.
The curfew will be in effect again from 8 p.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Monday. Violations are punishable by a $999 fine and up to 300 days in jail, city officials said.
On Saturday night, Denver police officers in riot gear fired tear gas, flash-bangs, pepper balls and sponge bullets at hundreds of protesters who ignored the city’s 8 p.m. curfew, announced by the mayor earlier in the day after two prior nights of protest and violence.
The crowd had gathered for the third day in a row at the Capitol building to protest the death of George Floyd, who died in Minneapolis after a police officer placed his knee on Floyd’s neck and pinned Floyd to the ground for several minutes while the man pleaded that he could not breathe. That officer has been charged with third-degree murder.
Floyd’s death sparked protests, violence, riots and looting all over the United States. On Saturday, protesters in Denver clashed with each other as well as with police, with some protesters trying to keep the demonstration peaceful while others incited violence.
Denver police are expected to address Saturday’s actions during a Sunday afternoon news conference.
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