The city of Baltimore closed several downtown schools, public transportation and businesses early on Monday, April 27 in fears of protesting violence erupting as many residents are still hurt and searching for answers after the violent arrest of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old man who suffered a spinal cord injury earlier this month, allegedly at the hands of the police who arrested him. It’s being reported that a large group of grade school students and police (all dressed up in full riot-gear) clashed near Mondawmin Mall on Monday afternoon following the early closings.
Students and demonstrators in the street hurled rocks, bricks and bottles at police officers. Some demonstrators attacked a parked police car, leaping on the roof and hood and smashing windows. One photojournalist was assaulted and it’s being reported that seven police officers have been injured and one is unresponsive.
According to a widely circulated flier, a high school “purge” or a walk out was to take place at 3 p.m., starting at Mondawmin Mall and ending downtown. According to reports, the flier included an image of protesters smashing the windshield of a police car Saturday during a march for Freddie Gray.
The Baltimore police department has been live-tweeting the protests, but can we believe them? We already have a hard enough time believing their police reports after their violent encounters with Black people, but now they’re showing us in 140 characters or less that they can shape a story better than the people living it. They’re call the students, “aggressive” and warning Baltimore residents to stay away from specific areas where they’re rioting.