Protesters converged on Rochester’s Public Safety Building Sunday night as demonstrations against the death of Daniel Prude continued for the fifth day.
The demonstrations came after Mayor Lovely Warren and the city’s police chief La’Ron Singletary called for calm following contentious protests on Saturday.
Rochester Police said 1,000 people had gathered Sunday evening.
“Let’s work together to keep everyone safe!” the department tweeted.
In a new tack, police on Sunday night were allowing protesters to march up to the Public Safety Building (PSB), home to the Rochester Police Department, after previously barricading demonstrators about a quarter mile up the road, where clashes ensued between protesters and police.
Singletary said earlier Sunday that there was credible information that outside agitators want to destroy the PSB, but country legislator Rachel Barnhart, who was injured while attending Saturday night’s protests, told ABC News she thought Saturday’s protests only became violent after demonstrators encountered police at the barricade and suggested that allowing protesters to march to the PSB would curtail the violence.
On Sunday evening a group of church elders boarded buses near City Hall to travel to the PSB in order to act as a buffer between protesters and the police in a move that city officials hoped would keep the protests peaceful.
Warren’s pleas for peaceful demonstrations came after police used pepper spray and tear gas to disperse a crowd of over 1,200 people Saturday night. She stood by Singletary and the police department and commended them for their restraint during the last couple nights of protest, which authorities said included agitators from out of state.
“People from outside of the city like Alaska and Massachusetts have been arrested,” Singletary said at the news conference.
The protests stem from last week’s release of body camera footage showing the March 23 incident involving Rochester police officers and Prude, 41. Prude’s brother Joe called 911 to get help, saying Daniel was having a mental health emergency.