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Friday a 'peaceful night' in Charleston; no curfew planned for Saturday

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Demonstrators march through the City Market in Charleston on Friday, June 5, 2020 as protests continue in reaction to the killing of Minnesota man George Floyd by police. File/Lauren Petracca/Staff

Downtown Charleston will not have a curfew tonight if all goes well.

Mayor John Tecklenburg described Friday as a "peaceful night" after a curfew was in place from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. If conditions change, Tecklenburg said he will put a curfew in place.

After a riot broke out on King Street last Saturday, the city and county called for a curfew starting at midnight. A curfew was in place Sunday and Monday night as well, before another was instituted Friday night. 

In the past week, city staff went door to door making sure downtown business owners were signed up for the county's reverse 911 calls and compiled "the best list we've ever had" of owners' cellphone numbers and emails so they can communicate directly with owners if a curfew or another emergency erupts. 

To sign up for the county's emergency alerts system, click here.

A "heavy amount" of law enforcement and "behind the scene" resources were made available to the Charleston Police Department, Chief Luther Reynolds told council this morning. 

Police expect to see pop-up protests Saturday, but none are officially scheduled to the department's knowledge. There are at least two protests scheduled for Sunday, one at White Point Garden downtown and another in Mount Pleasant. 

"We're still in 24/7 mode," Reynolds said. "If anything does pop up, we can institute (a curfew)."

Reynolds said the police department has served 40 warrants on 15 individuals ranging from arson to assaulting police officers, with more arrests expected.

Charleston City Council also decided to waive any fees for downtown businesses damaged in last Saturday's riot. 

Protesters continue to gather in the Charleston area — and across the country — to protest racial injustice, especially after the death of Minnesota man George Floyd, who died May 25 at the hands of Minneapolis police May 25. In the Charleston area, young protesters are calling for leaders to address racial discrimination in housing, wages and police interactions. 

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Reach Mikaela Porter at 843-937-5906. Follow her on Twitter @mikaelaporterPC. 

Mikaela Porter joined The Post and Courier in April 2019 and writes about the city of Charleston. Previously, Mikaela reported on breaking news, local government, school issues and community happenings for The Hartford Courant in Hartford, Conn.

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