GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — An event in Grand Rapids rallying for justice in George Floyd’s murder case ended in several arrests Monday night.
Protesters gathered downtown for a Justice for George Floyd event in response to Derek Chauvin’s trial. Chauvin is a police officer charged in Floyd’s murder in Minneapolis.
The clash between protesters and police began after authorities said demonstrators used loud noise equipment and were blocking traffic lanes.
The Grand Rapids Police Department said event organizers spoke with them prior to the event, letting them know about the event. GRPD Sgt. Dan Adams said expectations were acknowledged, but some demonstrators did not follow those rules.
Adams also said warnings and commands were given before arrests were made.
As people were taken into custody, demonstrators could be heard yelling, “let them go.”
Protesters returned to Rosa Parks Circle, where the event started, about 30 minutes after the conflict began. The crowd then disbursed.
GRPD confirmed that eight people were arrested and that all charges are misdemeanor offenses, such as obstructing traffic and causing a public disturbance and refusing command of an officer.
Police also said a COVID-19 vaccine clinic was underway at DeVos Place, which brought more concerns for the community’s safety.
No injuries were reported, according to police.
GRPD is reminding the community that they respect freedom of speech and continue to ask organizers to work with them before an event takes place.
More details regarding the arrests will be made available Tuesday, police said.