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GRPD asking community members to skip rally scheduled for Monday

The police department said the 3 p.m. rally is not a permitted event and the city is discouraging residents from attending.
Credit: WZZM

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A second rally is scheduled for Monday, June 1, however local authorities are asking that community members do not attend. 

The Grand Rapids Police Department is reaching out to the organizers of the protest, which is expected to start downtown around 3 p.m., but a press release said the event was not permitted. 

The police department said it has not been able to identify the organizers of the event or make any contact with them.  

“We would very much like to speak to anyone associated with this rally in order to coordinate efforts to keep the community safe and not have a repeat of recent events,” Chief Eric Payne said in a statement Monday.  “What we have been hearing about lately is the need to work together, well, this is definitely one of those times.”

The second demonstration follows a peaceful protest against police brutality and the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer Saturday that ended in violence and riots across downtown, causing damage to businesses and city property. 

GRPD said officers arrested a total of 9 people, six of which were arrested for violating the 7 p.m. curfew put in place by Mayor Rosalynn Bliss Sunday afternoon. Anyone in violation of the curfew will be charged with a misdemeanor, which will result in up to 90 days in jail and/or up to $500 in fines. Grand Rapids Police said it would continue to enforce the citywide curfew at 7 p.m. Monday.

The Kent County Prosecutor Chris Becker said his office planned on pursing charges against rioters ranging from misdemeanors to felonies. So far, Becker has authorized charges against one 18-year-old man stemming from the weekend's riot. Charges include rioting, larceny, malicious destruction of property. 

The riot charge is a 10-year felony. Malicious destruction of property over $1,000 is a five-year felony. If damage exceeds $20,000, offenders face up to a decade behind bars.



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