Erie mayor and police chief speak out about riot aftermath

Local News

Mayor Joe Schember along with the police chief are speaking about the aftermath of the riot.

“This is certainly not normal life in Erie. It’s not something we are really excited about. However, it is happening and we need to deal with it.” Mayor Joe Schember said.

12 officers reported injured…11 business damaged…seven arrests and a video that has caught national attention. This video is from Saturday night’s riot appearing to show an Erie police officer, kicking a protester as she sat on the ground. This is part of an hour’s long situation.

“There were people behind the woman who were doing damage to properties in downtown Erie, but the police can’t advance beyond until people move back and I’m not sure why people wouldn’t move back and I’m not sure why people wouldn’t move. It looked like the video might have been doctored. We are trying to figure out the answer to that for sure, but this is an instance that we will evaluate.” Mayor Schember said.

Chief Dan Spizarny also commenting on videos that are circulating, stating in part:

“We are not aware of any civilian injuries. However, we invite anyone who would like to file a complaint to do so now so that a formal investigation of the incident can take place.” Spizarny said.

The Chief also noting what his officers experienced when working to break up the crowds.

“With shields up, face shields, helmets and riot gear on, our officers started to slowly move toward the crowd, asking them to disperse. During this time, while our officers were being hit with bricks, rocks, water bottles, and fireworks, they just took it all.”

Mayor Schember explained that one thing his team has worked diligently on is creating unity within the city.

“I think they have another motivation, these people, it’s not really to help minorities or people in Erie. It’s to disrupt things and we can not let that happen. We have a great society and, as you know, I am totally committed to transforming Erie, to make everyone feel accepted and unique talents and skills that every individual has. We are going to work hard on that and we won’t stop.” Mayor Schember said.

The city says that they will continue to watch over surveillance videos over the next several days and will provide an update on Monday.

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