Akron mayor intends to lift city curfew implemented following police shooting of Jayland Walker
By John Couwels, CNN
(CNN) -- The nightly curfew in Akron, Ohio, put in place following the police shooting of Jayland Walker will be lifted if there are no major public safety concerns Saturday evening, Mayor Daniel Horrigan said.
City officials said Monday that the downtown curfew was curtailed after a week of largely peaceful protests over the killing of Walker, a 25-year-old Black man shot dozens of times by eight Akron police at the end of an 18-minute vehicle and foot chase.
Horrigan said Monday that the curfew, which has gone through several iterations since body camera footage of the shooting was released on July 3, would be in effect from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. beginning that night.
He said Saturday that he intends to lift it Sunday morning. "The curfew will remain in place tonight and, absent additional public safety concerns, the curfew will terminate tomorrow morning," Horrigan said in a statement.
In at least one instance, the city used tear gas to disperse protesters. Walker's family has continuously called for non-violence from demonstrators and police.
Walker shot dozens of times
Walker was shot on June 27 after fleeing what police said was an attempted traffic stop. Walker was unarmed at the time he was killed, said Police Chief Stephen Mylett. A gun was found in his vehicle after the shooting, police said, and officers said Walker fired a gun from his vehicle during the car chase.
Eight officers who were directly involved in the shooting have been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation, Mylett said.
An autopsy revealed that Walker had 46 gunshot entrance wounds or graze injuries, Summit County Medical Examiner Dr. Lisa Kohler said Friday. His death was due to blood loss from his internal injuries, and the cause of death was multiple gunshot wounds, Kohler said.
Tests revealed no evidence of drugs or alcohol in his system, she added.
Walker had his hands cuffed behind his back when his body arrived at the coroner's office, according to photos from a preliminary medical examiner's report reviewed by CNN.
Law enforcement experts say it's common practice nationwide to handcuff a person perceived to be dangerous and armed -- even after they are shot by police -- so the person cannot access weapons or pose any further threat, CNN previously reported. However, Walker family attorney Bobby DiCello said the decision to handcuff Walker "sends a symbolic and inhumane message despite the procedure that is involved."
Walker's funeral took place on Wednesday at the Akron Civil Theater. Speakers called for peace on the streets, condemned the discriminatory state of policing in America, and urged a reimagining of public safety. They recalled Walker's life, his love of family, zeal for life, passion for music and basketball, and aspiration of starting his own business.
"We cannot make the deaths of our sons and daughters at such an early age the normal thing ... We must not try to act as if this is all right. This is not all right," Bishop Timothy Clarke, pastor of the First Church of God in Columbus, told mourners at the funeral. "There's nothing right about this. We should not be here. And Jayland should not be in that box."
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