Philadelphia demonstrations continue despite police shooting
Demonstrators marched in the streets a second night after two officers murdered Walter Wallace Jr.
PHILADELPHIA — Protesters robbed shops and scuffled with police late Tuesday in a second night of street unrest over the deadly killing of Walter Wallace Jr., a 27-year-old Black man, more than 24 hours earlier in a clash.
Local tv and news websites showed looters targeting shops in the area of Port Richmond, northeast of the city centre, as policemen clashed with demonstrators in the heart of West Philadelphia, where Mr. Wallace was killed Monday afternoon after approaching police officers with a knife.
Walter Wallace Sr., the victim's father, urged looters to stop. "It'll give my son a terrible scar from all this looting and turmoil," Mr. Wallace said in a CNN interview. "We live here, and it's the only collective advantage we have, and if we take all the advantage and burn it down, we don't have anything."
Danielle Outlaw, the police chief, told reporters on Tuesday afternoon she'd reveal details about the incident in the next few days, but she didn't know if it would include body camera video from the officers who shot Mr. Wallace.
"It's normal for officers to respond to domestic disturbance or some sort of call with a gun because it's one of the things we're keeping on our tool belt," Commissioner Outlaw said, noting the officers didn't have stun weapons.
Philadelphia's marches are the latest in a string of national demonstrations seeking justice following George Floyd's police shootings in Minneapolis, Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Ky., and Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta, among others.
In addition to posters and chanting, several protests from New York to Portland, Ore. featured looting, arsoning, and police car damage. Officers sometimes violently attacked demonstrators, releasing tear gas, and batoning them.
In a joint statement on Tuesday, former vice president Joseph R. Biden Jr., Democratic presidential nominee, and his running mate, California's Senator Kamala Harris, tried to affirm demonstrators' outrage over Mr. Wallace's death while discouraging abuse and police assaults.
"We can not recognize the death of a mental health epidemic in this world," Mr. Biden and Ms. Harris said. Yet, they added: "Looting isn't campaigning, it's violence. It takes focus away from a life-threatening disaster.
Thirty officers were injured on Monday when demonstrators hurled bricks and rocks at them, a police spokesperson said, adding that after a pickup truck hit one officer had a fractured leg. According to The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Pennsylvania National Guard was supposed to send hundreds of people to Philadelphia within days.
Demonstrators assembled for Mr. Wallace 's assassination. In a social media video, screaming "Back up! "And" Down the knife! "He walks to two policemen before crashing in a gunshots flurry. When more police enter, a woman wails.
"Bro, they just killed him in front of me," says a man in the film. "You mustn't give him too many arrows."
Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement on Monday night that he had talked to Mr. Wallace 's family and that the shooting will be thoroughly investigated.
"I watched this horrific incident's footage," he said, "and it raises tough questions to address."