Erie County curfew in effect from 9 p.m. Sunday to 6 a.m. Monday

May 31, 2020

There will be another curfew covering all of Erie County Sunday night into Monday morning. The hours are 9 p.m. through 6 a.m. All but essential employees are being told to stay home.

Clean up of Niagara Square following rioting
Credit Photo by Ryan Zunner / WBFO News

At a noon-hour briefing Sunday, County Executive Mark Poloncarz said law enforcement has received intelligence that rioting linked to last week's police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis could again occur Sunday, this time spreading into the suburbs.

Mayor Byron Brown said there will be a strong police presence, supplemented by members of the State Police.

Buffalo Police spokesman Jeff Rinaldo said a photo of the suspect who threw a burning cardboard box into City Hall is being posted on the department's social media pages and that tips are coming in that could lead to his identity.

Rinaldo also said the person who was removed from a car and beaten was a female motorist. She's being treated at the Erie County Medical Center. He said her car drove into a crowd of protesters on Delaware Avenue when the incident occurred. Her car was badly damaged.

Brown praised city police for showing restraint during Saturday night's protest. Despite being pelted with rocks and bottles, Brown said officers did not return that violence.

Both Poloncarz and Brown continue to say agitators from outside the area are inciting the violence. Poloncarz said police were told by local activists that they didn't recognize some of those involved.

There were smashed windows in Niagara Square and along Elmwood Avenue, Niagara Street and Grant Street. Looting was also reported.

Brown said the rioters did not hurt the city or county but small business owners who are trying to survive during the coronavirus pandemic.

City crews started cleaning up during the overnight hours. They were joined after sunrise by volunteers. The group Buffalo in Bloom came out to repair flower beds in Niagara Square.