RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Police arrested 12 people following Saturday night’s protests in downtown Raleigh.
Protesters gathered to demonstrate against the recent decision in the Breonna Taylor case.
The protest began in Nash Square in downtown Raleigh around 7:30 p.m. amid road closures already in place by Raleigh officials.
The crowds began to march through downtown shortly after 8 p.m.
Shortly thereafter, some people among the protesters began vandalizing buildings.
Shortly after 9:30 p.m., police declared the gathering became an unlawful assembly and 12 people were subesequently arrested.
Charges include Public Disturbance/Unlawful Assembly, and Resist/Delay/Obstruct. One person was charged with Assault on a Law Enforcement Officer.
The crowd dispersed prior to the 11 p.m. curfew imposed by the mayor.
Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin held a news conference Sunday morning (see video below).
Baldwin also released a statement late Saturday night about the events.
Here is her full statement:
What Raleigh experienced tonight was wrong and had very little to do with any call for justice. The City prepared an opportunity for those who wanted to protest peacefully, and once again, vandals (mostly white) used this as an excuse to incite violence and cause destruction of our downtown business community. Any message of support for Breonna Taylor was usurped by protestors who do not care about peace; they came here with the goal of destruction.
We as a Council are seeking understanding and compassion. We want to bring our community together. We commend the groups who gathered to peacefully protest this afternoon. Their message was clear – they are asking for equity and safety for people of color. We want to work together to achieve these goals.
I am urging our community not to judge the peaceful protesters by the actions of those who came to Raleigh tonight with an agenda of destruction. Their goal was simply to cause chaos. We responded quickly and made multiple arrests. For those who want peace, we are here to work with you.RALEIGH MAYOR MARY-ANN BALDWIN