Denver drops charges against curfew violators

The move only applies to people who don’t also face more serious charges.

Denver Police officers in riot gear walk onto block around the Capitol as they fill the lawn with tear gas to push protesters away. May 29, 2020. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Denver Police officers in riot gear walk onto block around the Capitol as they fill the lawn with tear gas to push protesters away. May 29, 2020. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

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The Denver City Attorney is dropping curfew violation charges against those arrested during recent protests against racism and police violence, as long as the defendants aren’t also charged with more significant crimes.

The office says it has identified 320 cases that qualify for dismissal.

The city says it will also reach out to those arrested and invite them to participate in a forum with police and other community members, although attendance is not a condition of having the charges dismissed.

“We recognize the profound value of peaceful protest, especially now,” said city attorney Kristen Bronson in a statement. “While I very much hope that there is never a future need for another curfew in Denver, if one is ever imposed, in whatever circumstances, it will be important that our residents take it seriously and comply with it. We support all First Amendment-based protests, but we could not support the violent, destructive behavior that occurred in the early days of the protests.”

Mayor Michael Hancock imposed the curfew on Saturday, May 30, after several nights of vandalism and confrontations between police and demonstrators. The curfew expired on June 4.

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