Shortly after Freddie Gray‘s funeral had come to a close on Monday (April 27), what started as peaceful protests transformed into an unimaginable amount of rioting in Baltimore, Maryland. As a result, Governor Larry Hogan declared a state of emergency at approximately 7:00 p.m. later that day.
Twenty-five year old Freddie Gray was pursued by police after running away from law enforcement in a crime-filled neighborhood. Gray was then arrested for possession of a switch blade.
Bystanders alleged that even though Gray was heard yelling “I can’t breathe,” he was not given medical attention in a timely manner while police held him in custody. He died on April 19 due to a spinal cord injury shortly after falling into a coma at the time of his arrest.
A flyer was allegedly circulated publicizing The Purge to begin at 3:00 p.m. which mimicked the movie’s concept where laws cease to exist for 24 hours.
Protesters have been seen standing in front of police with their hands raised. Violent acts such as throwing rocks and bottles at the lines of police force dressed in riot gear as well as journalists who were reporting on the scene have been caught on tape and also have been tweeted out by Baltimore police.
A group of juveniles are still in the area of Mondawmin Mall. We are hearing reports of bottles and bricks being thrown at officers.
— Baltimore Police (@BaltimorePolice) April 27, 2015
Not even an hour into the violence, smoke was seen on the streets of Baltimore and cops have been carried from the scene injured. A local CVS, cop cars, and nearby businesses have been lit on fire and objects have been thrown through display windows.
Following the declared state of emergency, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings has announced that a schools will be closed on Tuesday (April 28). Rawlings also announced that a citywide curfew will be enforced beginning Tuesday from 10p.m. to 5a.m. and will be implemented for a week.