Detroiters are stepping up to minimize violence at protests against police brutality

Monday marked the fourth night of protests in Detroit

A 16-year-old led a peaceful protest in Detroit Monday night
A 16-year-old led a peaceful protest in Detroit Monday night

DETROIT – Residents and local leaders in Detroit are stepping up to minimize violence at protests in the city.

The protests are being held to decry police brutality following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Protests are taking place across the country.

The state of Minnesota has filed a human rights complaint against the Minneapolis Police Department. Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer who pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for several minutes, even after he stopped moving.

Overwhelming emotion from Detroit Police Deputy Chief Todd Bettison, describing how and why he took a knee with protesters.

READ: What Detroit police are doing to keep protests peaceful

He did it so the officers on standby to protect the city would not. He said he did it for the city, and for George Floyd.

Bettison, Detroit police Chief James Craig and Detroit mayor Mike Duggan said Detroit is leading the nation -- allowing protests to take place but not allowing chaos to break out.

So much of it has to do with the relationships built with people like Maurice Hardwick, known as Pastor Mo. Police are trusting Pastor Mo to help diffuse tense situations.

READ: Hear from the 16-year-old who helped lead peaceful protest against police brutality in Detroit

On Monday night, no tear gas was fired. The fourth night of protests ended peacefully.


About the Authors:

Shawn Ley is an Emmy-Award winning reporter. In more than 20 years covering stories in television news, Shawn’s reporting has taken him from war-torn eastern Europe, to reporting from an F-16 fighter jet and now to the fast and furious breaking news of Detroit.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.