LIVE STREAM: Detroit mayor, police chief to address city protests, coronavirus pandemic

Watch the news conference live at 3 p.m.

DETROIT – Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan will hold a news briefing at 3 p.m. on Thursday to address the city’s latest response to the George Floyd protests downtown and the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

You can watch the live stream in the video above at 3 p.m.

Duggan will be joined by Detroit Police Chief James Craig and Chief Public Health Officer Denise Fair.

Protestors flocked to Downtown Detroit again on Wednesday for a sixth consecutive day to protest against police brutality and social injustice following the killing of George Floyd. In a surprising turn of events, Detroit police allowed protestors to continue marching without enforcing the city’s 8 p.m. curfew, which has been in effect since Sunday.

MORE: Protesters declare victory after Detroit police let them march without enforcing curfew

Over the last few days many protestors have been arrested downtown for violating the city’s curfew.

Mayor Duggan enacted a curfew Sunday to help curb violence seen during nighttime protests last weekend. Duggan said Wednesday that a flip gets switched when night falls, when the days’ peaceful protests transform into something insidious -- primarily led by people who aren’t from Detroit.

“There’s no question something is going on,” Duggan said. “Every single night 65, 70 percent of arrests are coming from La Jolla, California and the Bronx in New York? These folks are here because they don’t have our best interests at heart."

The curfew restricts people from being in public places or on public roads after 8 p.m. in Detroit. Though he has received criticism, Mayor Duggan said he stands by his decision to implement a curfew in an effort to protect the city.

“People want to say I’ve taken steps that are too restrictive, that may be a fair criticism but the other thing is 28 states in this country have called in the national guard, the city of Detroit has not," Duggan said.

Protests in Downtown Detroit have been largely peaceful since they began last Friday. Hundreds of people have been arrested during protests since last weekend, but most arrests that occurred Sunday and beyond were related to curfew violations.

Another peaceful march is planned for Friday at Belle Isle.

Demonstrators are protesting in Detroit and around the state and country to call out police brutality and social injustice against Black Americans following the killing of black Minneapolis man George Floyd on May 25.

A Minneapolis police officer killed Floyd by kneeling on his neck for more than eight minutes while he was in police custody, handcuffed and laying on the ground. The officer, Derek Chauvin, was charged with second degree murder. Three officers present during the incident were also recently charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder.

READ MORE: Prosecutors charge 3 more officers in George Floyd’s death

All four officers were fired last week.

In coronavirus news, the state has been cleared to reopen a number of businesses beginning Thursday as COVID-19 case and death numbers slow. Detroit -- which has led the state with the highest case and death numbers related to the virus since March -- is now seeing a 1% infection rate as of Tuesday, officials said.

The city is preparing to reopen businesses under Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s MI Safe Start Plan.

MORE: Reopening Michigan

About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.