Violent clashes do not stop in Charlotte (North Carolina), where on Tuesday, September 20, an African American citizen was shot dead by the police. Many protesters took to the streets to protest against the police last night.
State of emergency
An incandescent situation forced the governor to declare a state of emergency and to deploy the National Guard to help the agents. The tension has skyrocketed in the city center when one or two gunshots reached a person, who was found on the ground in a pool of blood. At first, after rumors spread by local media, the police and the city authorities confirmed his death. Then, they rectified: the man, who has not been identified yet, is in serious condition in the hospital – reads a tweet posted by the town hall -. He is kept alive artificially. To avoid the worst, from the mayor’s offices they explained that the man had been shot by a civilian (who has not been identified yet): “No bullets were fired by the police”.
The man is in a serious condition
Both the causes of what happened and the identity of those involved still need to be clarified. Yet, this episode certainly threatened to make the situation precipitate. The worst moments ccurred when protesters tried to force the cordon of policemen wearing riot gears to enter the hotel lobby where the injured man was receiving first aid. At that point a shower of tear gas and stun grenades were opened by the agents, who tried to disperse the crowd, with some demonstrators who reacted by throwing stones and bottles. At least one officer was wounded and taken to hospital. The night before, 16 policemen had been injured.
Vandals among the peaceful protestants damaged several cars, broke several windows and destroyed some stores, including the store of the Hornets, the Charlotte basketball team that plays in the NBA. Two employees of the Hyatt Hotel were attacked by a group of people who wanted to enter the hotel. At least a dozen more people were arrested. “That is not what we are,” said the mayor of the city, Jennifer Roberts. The governor of North Carolina, Pat McCrory, has defined it as “intolerable violence.”
Meanwhile, the two African Americans shot dead (in 2 days) by the police in Charlotte and Tulsa, Oklahoma, are likely to make the protests spread to other American cities and across the whole country. In New York, hundreds of people marched along Broadway and the Fifth Avenue to denounce the brutal methods of the agents and to ask justice for the repeated episodes of violence against blacks.