Milwaukee relatively calm after two nights of protests

MILWAUKEE, Aug. 16 (UPI) — Milwaukee was relatively calm overnight Monday as officials imposed a 10 p.m. curfew for teenagers after two nights of violent protests over a fatal shooting by a police officer.

More than 100 National Guard members activated by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker “as a precaution” were on standby.

Police Chief Ed Flynn told reporters shortly before midnight that there was “no major arson or property damage.”

Six people were arrested earlier in the night but there was no violence, police said.

“This community is not interested in doing damage to where they live,” Flynn said.

Earlier in the day, Mayor Tom Barrett warned: “After 10 o’clock, your teenagers better be home or in a place where they’re off the streets.”

Milwaukee officials also announced that Sherman Park, the site of the shooting, would be closed from 6 p.m. until 6 a.m.

On Saturday afternoon, an unidentified black police officer shot Sylville Smith, a 23-year-old black man. Police said Smith had a loaded handgun and fled a traffic stop on foot.

At least 200 people were involved in protests Saturday night and three were arrested

The next night, more than 100 people held candles and paper signs reading “BlackLivesMatter.” They gathered at Sherman Park and marched to the site of the shooting. When police moved in and threatened arrests if the crowd didn’t disperse, some threw rocks, concrete and debris at the cops. A rock that broke the windshield of a squad car injured an officer, police said.

During the vigil, Kimberly Neal, the sister of Smith, said the family wanted prosecutors to charge the officer who shot him.

Kristine Surek, a longtime Sherman Park resident, told WTMJ TV: “I think it’s unfair that, nationally, we’re getting a bad reputation. I have friends out of the city who are calling me and saying, ‘Get out of that neighborhood.'”

In all, 37 people have been arrested since Saturday night, police said.

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