Philadelphia imposes curfew in anticipation of third night of violence after police killing

The curfew will run from 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. Thursday, but grocery stores, pharmacies and restaurants will still be allowed to operate delivery services

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Philadelphia imposed a citywide curfew Wednesday after two nights of unrest that saw violent clashes between demonstrators and police and businesses ransacked and vandalized amid unrest over the fatal shooting of a Black man.

The curfew will run from 9 p.m.to 6 a.m. Thursday. Businesses were notified in a message from the city managing director's office. Grocery stores, restaurants and pharmacies will be allowed to operate delivery services after 9 p.m.

“While the curfew hopefully helps to minimize disturbances I would expect the aggravation and inconvenience to you, your staff or your patrons attempting to navigate the curfew are very likely to overshadow any benefits,” wrote Michael Carroll, the Deputy Managing Director for transportation and infrastructure.

A woman cleans up debris at a Walmart that was damaged in Wednesday night protests in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

A woman cleans up debris at a Walmart that was damaged in Wednesday night protests in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

Many took to the streets Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning to protest the killing of Walter Wallace Jr., by two police officers. Video footage of the shooting captured by a bystander unleashed a new wave of protests, accompanied by riots and looting. 

Violence was reported Tuesday night as 15 people were shot, including a 15-year-old, and up to 1,000 people descended on the Port Richmond neighborhood where they ransacked multiple businesses, authorities said.

In total, 81 people were arrested overnight, including 53 people on suspicion of burglary and eight others accused of assaulting police officers. About 23 officers received treatment for injuries, the city said.

Officers have been pelted with various objects, Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said, including bricks, rocks and other projectiles. Some officers have been doused with what appeared to be blood, she said Wednesday.

Authorities have received 297 reports of looting, she said. Videos and images posted to social media showed people running in and out of businesses carrying clothes, electronics and other merchandise. 

In addition, authorities reported nine ATM explosions and damage to nine police vehicles. 

"What we saw yesterday throughout our city... had nothing to do with protests," Outlaw said during a virtual news conference along with Mayor Jim Kenney and other officials. "The widespread lawlessness, including the burglary and looting of area businesses, serve no purposes whatsoever."

William McSwain, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, will announce criminal indictments related to the unrest on Thursday. 

Protesters face off with police during a demonstration Tuesday in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

Protesters face off with police during a demonstration Tuesday in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

In light of the curfew, some businesses have decided not to open Wednesday. Second Story Brewing posted to its Instagram account that it will close to ensure the safety of its staff.  

"Given the city’s 9 PM curfew and out of abundance of concern for our staff and their safety we won’t be opening," the post reads. 

Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat, signed an emergency disaster proclamation Wednesday to provide additional support to local officials. 

“Over the last few days, hundreds of people have gathered to peacefully speak out against social injustice, but their voices are being drowned out by others who are taking advantage of this fragile time in their city to sow mayhem and discord,” Wolf said in a statement. “I signed this proclamation so commonwealth resources can be provided quickly to protect lives and property.”

The investigation into Wallace's death is ongoing, Outlaw said. Authorities said the 27-year-old was armed with a knife and charged officers before he was killed Monday. Both officers fired at least seven rounds apiece, police said. 

Wallace struggled with mental health issues and was bipolar, a family member previously told Fox News.

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Police body camera footage and 911 audio will possibly be released in the near future, Outlaw said, adding that the Wallace family will have the opportunity to view the footage before it is made public.

The Pennsylvania National Guard has been mobilized to assist police officers amid the unrest, Kenny said.

"We will do everything we can to ensure the right to assemble and exercise free speech is protected," he said. "But we will not allow others to destroy property and further harm our communities."