Protesters gather at site where Roxboro man killed by officer; state of emergency, curfew still in effect
Posted July 29, 2020 5:14 p.m. EDT
Updated July 30, 2020 5:02 a.m. EDT
Roxboro on Wednesday was in the second night of a two-night state of emergency and curfew that was put into place Tuesday by the City Council in the wake of the officer-involved shooting last Friday.
Roxboro Police posted a reminder on its Facebook page about Wednesday's curfew, which runs from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. Thursday morning. It will be rescinded after that, the City Council announced Tuesday.
Protesters gathered Wednesday evening at the site of a memorial for David Earl Brooks, Jr., the man killed by a police officer last Friday and the reason the curfew and state of emergency was put into place.
The area where the protest was held was not under curfew.
WRAL's Kirsten Gutierrez reports about 50 protesters, some who called themselves members of The New Black Panthers, were seen gathering at the memorial. At least two people were seen carrying military-style weapons. Police and SWAT team members arrived at the scene shortly after 6:30 p.m. The area was eventually blocked off to traffic by police during the protest.
Protesters began to leave the area shortly after 7 p.m. One of the protesters, who had a megaphone, said he was Brooks' brother. He said the group was leaving to gather at the family's home. He and many of the other protesters repeatedly chanted that all they wanted was peace as they began to disperse.
"The public is reminded there is a curfew in place. We ask for continued patience in the investigation by the SBI and DA's Office. We ask our community for peace," the Facebook post states.
The proclamation listed areas of downtown but not the entire city. The area impacted covered most of the downtown area where government buildings and businesses are located.
Two Roxboro police officers have been placed on leave as the SBI continues to investigate. Wednesday, video footage was released of the incident.
Tuesday's proclamation also states the state of emergency and curfew were put into place after rumors of "outside presence," possibly by protesters or third-party groups looking to protest Brooks' death.
The proclamation also states "Roxboro experienced a tragedy on Friday, July 24, 2020, that resulted in the loss of life, while loved ones grieved and showed their sorrow in a peaceful manner, it has come to the city's attention that an outside presence may attempt to disrupt the safety and well-being of the citizens of Roxboro; and as a result of the above-described tragedy, we have determined that there is an imminent threat of, or existing conditions have caused or will cause, widespread or severe damage, injury, or loss of life or property, and public safety authorities will be unable to maintain public order or afford adequate protection for loves and property;"