U.S. protests: Father of Black man killed by police urges calm after more unrest

October 28, 2020 - 18:51

The family of a Philadelphia Black man shot dead by police appealed on Tuesday for calm as a second night of protests over his death brought renewed violence, with clashes between police and demonstrators and some looting of stores.

Tension has gripped the streets of Philadelphia since Monday's deadly police shooting of Walter Wallace, 27, who was armed with a knife and described by relatives as suffering from a mental breakdown, in a confrontation with law enforcement, Reuters reported. 

Hundreds of marchers demanded racial justice with some jeering and skirmishing with police through the night and into early Wednesday, as Philadelphia became the latest flashpoint in the United States on issues of race and police use of force.
Tuesday's rallies began peacefully but grew confrontational as darkness fell, just as on the previous day.

Police turned out in force to cordon off a West Philadelphia commercial district that was looted the previous night.

But looters broke into business elsewhere, including in the city's Port Richmond section, aerial news video from WPVI television showed. At times, police in riot gear shoved protesters back from barricade lines.

The dead man's father, Walter Wallace Sr., appealed to people to "stop the violence" out of respect for his son and family.

"I don't condone no violence, tearing up the city, looting of the stores, and all this chaos," he told reporters and a gathering of people. "It's an SOS to help, not to hurt."

He also called for justice in a case still being investigated.

The unrest in Philadelphia follows that in other cities where police have killed Black men.

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