Back the Blue supporters glad Trump is coming to Kenosha, but local leaders say it's 'not ideal'
KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- It has been a week since a Kenosha police officer shot Jacob Blake, and this week, President Donald Trump plans to travel to Kenosha.
At Civic Park, "Back the Blue" supporters gathered Sunday Aug. 30. It's the same park where massive crowds gathered to hear Blake's family speak the day before.
"(Police) are what stands between us and total chaos. Look at Portland, Oregon," said Peter Bora, a Back the Blue protester from Kenosha.
They acknowledged the video of Jacob Blake being shot seven times is shocking but said they stand with Officer Rusten Sheskey.
"I thought it looked bad for the cop, but I stood my ground and I said I back him 'cause there's a reason he did," said Chase Leboeuf, a Back the Blue protester from Kenosha. "Knowing what I know now what the DOJ released that there was a knife sitting on the floorboard, I fully support it."
The Back the Blue rally also drew some Black Lives Matter protesters and some passersby looking to engage in conversation.
"I had to be the common ground of understanding like, 'No, they're not against you. They want you to understand they want you stop tearing up the community, but at the same time they understand that y'all want justice,'" said Jamarcus Blaze, whose home is near the park.
The rally was mostly peaceful but arguments did get a bit heated at times, a sign that tensions are still high in the city.
"I believe it's very frustrating to anybody of color 'cause I mean the only people I know that are blue are smurfs," Pleasant Prairie resident Kurt said. "The flag over there, I personally take as an insult because it is degrading the American flag."
The White House confirmed Trump is scheduled to come to Kenosha on Tuesday to survey the damage and to speak with law enforcement.
Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser issued a statement to CBS 58 saying Trump's visit is "not ideal" as the city is still dealing with the aftermath of the shooting of Blake.
His full statement reads:
Upon learning of the president's upcoming visit, law enforcement supporters said they're glad to hear it.
"I voted for the president, and I will vote again and yes, come to Kenosha," Bora said.
"I think (Trump) needs to come here and see what domestic terrorism has done to this town and many other towns in this country," Leboeuf said.
However, others worry it could incite more violence and destruction.
"Nobody wants to see him or even hear him," Blaze said.
Kenosha County has again declared a state of Emergency Curfew for Monday, Aug. 31 and Tuesday, Sept. 1 from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.