Detroit — On Tuesday, at the fifth protest in as many days, Detroit Police Department posted its highest arrest total yet, 127.
Tuesday’s protest was not marked by the violence of past nights, but police, after issuing a number of warnings, were filmed making mass arrests of people who were out beyond the city’s 8 p.m. temporary curfew.
The 127 arrests consist of 60 men and 67 women. Police say 47 of them were Detroiters, while six were from out of state. The remainder were Metro Detroiters, said Sgt. Nicole Kirkwood, head of media relations for Detroit Police Department.
“We advised they would be arrested. Some complied, some didn’t. Some offered some resistance, and so they were taken into custody,” Police Chief James Craig told reporters at the scene Tuesday night. “We don’t want to arrest, but if we have to, we will.”
“I would have preferred that this not happen,” Craig said. “Clearly I would have liked to reported to you that it was a peaceful protest, there was compliance, but we have a curfew in effect.”
In neighboring Warren, a marching protest in the Macomb County suburb ended without incident or arrest, police said.
“I think with the mayor [Jim Fouts] and myself being there, we established a good relationship with the protesters, with the demonstrators, to make sure we indicated to them our support for the protest,” said Warren Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer.
“As a police department, we wanted them to know they were protected, that we were there to let them protest as long and as far as they wanted to,” Dwyer added.
The group of about 100 people, in a city of 133,000, marched several miles north from its starting point at Eight Mile and Van Dyke, before heading back there.
Dwyer said the city made two school buses available to shuttle the protesters back to the Eight Mile and Van Dyke.
“They didn’t take it,” Dwyer said. “I know they had their own reasons, but the offer was there, and they knew it was there, and they appreciated that.”
But 150 miles west in Kalamazoo, local officials called in the Michigan National Guard Tuesday after a high-tension night of protesting Monday. Police claimed they were outnumbered 50-to-1 by protesters before using tear gas on them.
That display, public safety chief Karianne Thomas told the Associated Press, “was not our community’s finest hour.”
And so on Tuesday, 90 members of the National Guard were deployed to the 76,000-person city as a “peaceful presence,” said Capt. Andrew Layton, spokesman for the Michigan National Guard.
While those people left town a bit after midnight, and had only been requested for one night, Sunday, in Lansing, about 125 members have remained on-site in Grand Rapids, Layton said.
Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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