AKRON, Ohio — Akron Police Chief Steve Mylett and Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan held their first daily press briefing on Monday to update the city on crime and the Jayland Walker investigation. They discussed starting the curfew one hour later, how they have been handling a roving vehicle caravan of protesters in the city, and said that bounties have been placed on the officers involved in the shooting, which is one of the reasons why their names are not being released at this time.
You can watch the briefing in the player below:
The city plans on continuing with its curfew this week but is pushing the start time back to help local businesses.
The curfew will be from 11 p.m. until 5 a.m.
Caravan of protesters
Mylett confirmed that concerns have been raised about a roving caravan of cars protesting Walker's shooting.
"What I want to say is that so long as the participants are nonviolent, we are going to give them space," Mylett said. "They have committed to us that they're not going to engage in violence. And everybody does have a constitutional right to protest and demonstrate."
Misinformation being spread
Mylett again addressed misinformation that he said is being spread to the public. One piece of misinformation is that the officers involved in the Walker shooting are back on duty. Mylett said that is false, and all officers involved are still on administrative leave. He also said that misinformation is being spread about the names of the officers involved in the shooting and "other events."
"When you when we put out misinformation, that actually tends to increase the level of tension," Mylett said. "And I'm asking the public to please be mindful of that. Misinformation doesn't help the situation at all. BCI is doing their investigation and we will do an internal investigation at the conclusion of that, all information will be shared."
Why the names of the officers involved in Walker's shooting have not been released
According to Horrigan, the city has a long-standing policy of not releasing the names of officers involved in fatal shootings.
"Look, the challenge right now is there's been bounties placed on police officers' heads," Mylett said.
Mylett said the department has a duty to protect the community but also to protect the officers and their families.
Freedom BLOC and the Department of Justice
According to Deputy Mayor Marco Sommerville, religious groups in the city and the Department of Justice have been able to facilitate conversations within the community.
Horrigan said that he did receive a certified letter from the activist group Freedom BLOC with a list of demands that they said must be met before they stop protesting. Horrigan said that the DOJ is helping to facilitate conversations with Freedom BLOC, and while he is willing to meet with them, he is "not going to unilaterally agree to demands before a meeting."
The city plans on holding daily briefings until July 31.
They will not be holding one on July 13 to respect the city's day of mourning for Jayland Walker.