KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Before police declared Monday night’s protest an unlawful assembly, Mayor Quinton Lucas joined peaceful protesters to march through Kansas City, talking with them about their frustrations and opportunities for change.
It was the second time Monday the mayor joined protesters, angry over the death of George Floyd and police treatment of the black community.
He and Kansas City Police Chief Rick Smith first joined protesters that afternoon at the Country Club Plaza to talk, spending about an hour there.
Both knelt for a moment of silence, holding a t-shirt that read “I can’t breathe,” the words Floyd said repeatedly moments before he died in Minneapolis police custody.
The mayor and police chief eventually left, but Lucas returned by about 8:30 p.m. again talking with protesters.
Not long after he arrived, Lucas took to the streets with a large group, urging them to march together in peace. They walked north on Main Street and then turning around to head back to the Plaza.
The group Lucas walked with was largely peaceful, and Lucas apologized for not coming to march with them sooner.
People marching Monday said they’re protesting because they want their voices heard.
Many protesters FOX4 spoke with said they don’t want looters to join them because that’s not what their protest is about.
People began protesting for the fourth day around the Plaza around 3 p.m. Monday. It was a smaller crowd from the weekend but still a lively one.
Police tell FOX4 about 10 people have been arrested Monday, as of 9 p.m. Some of the arrests involved people carrying projectiles such as rocks and urine rags that police believe they were going to throw at them.
Another group of protesters, however, didn’t have a quite so positive experience. They marched down Broadway, where police tried to stop them when they reached 31st Street.
When both groups returned to the Plaza area, tensions escalated and some protesters started throwing water bottles and other items at officers.
KCPD said things didn’t start to take a turn until protesters who weren’t with the mayor returned to the park.
Police deemed the protest an unlawful assembly and deployed tear gas to urge the crowd to clear.