5:05 PM - October 31, 2020
5:05 PM - October 31, 2020

Three arrests related to unrest made since Friday

Philadelphia police have made three additional arrests since Friday in connection with civil unrest that began after Walter Wallace Jr. was killed by two officers in West Philadelphia on Monday.

There have also been two injured officers, 35 cases of looting, and two ATM incidents since Friday, according to an update from city officials on Saturday.

Since Monday, there have been a total of 225 arrests, 60 injured police officers, 617 incidents of looting, 18 damaged vehicles, and 24 ATM explosions, according to the city. Fifty-nine of the injured officers have been treated and released, while one officer remains hospitalized.

Patricia Madej

3:56 PM - October 31, 2020
3:56 PM - October 31, 2020

No curfew for Philadelphia tonight

The city announced there will be no curfew in Philadelphia tonight. There was a curfew that started at 9 p.m. Friday due, in part, to Mischief Night, or Halloween Eve.

Still Mayor Jim Kenney and Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw recommend residents stay at home unless it is necessary to travel.

3:30 PM - October 31, 2020
3:30 PM - October 31, 2020

Protest ends on a joyous note

As the formal protest ended, speakers invoked Assata Shakur, a civil rights activist convicted of killing a police officer, and urged the crowd to raise their fists while chanting: “It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win, we must love and support one another. We have nothing to lose but our chains.”

The atmosphere switched to a party, as a DJ started his set and kids gathered for a Black Lives Matter Philly-sponsored Halloween costume contest.

—Maddie Hana, Vinny Vella

3:00 PM - October 31, 2020
3:00 PM - October 31, 2020

Wallace killing invokes memories of MOVE bombing

Mike Africa, speaks to a crowd at Malcolm X Park during a protest Saturday over the fatal police shooting of Walter Wallace Jr. on Monday.
Tyger Williams / Staff Photographer
Mike Africa, speaks to a crowd at Malcolm X Park during a protest Saturday over the fatal police shooting of Walter Wallace Jr. on Monday.

Comparisons between Walter Wallace Jr.'s killing and a police bombing in a Black community 35 years ago continue to resonate with hundreds protesting police violence in Philadelphia. Krystal Strong told the crowd, “If you’re in Malcolm X Park you better bring some Malcolm X energy,” she said. “If you don’t know the MOVE 9 and you are living in the city of Philadelphia you better Google it right now.”

She referred to a May 1985 standoff between the organization MOVE, a back-to-nature and Black-liberation group that was housed about a third of a mile from 61st and Locust Streets, where police shot Wallace Monday night. MOVE participants at the organization’s communal home in Cobbs Creek had protested the arrest of nine of its members in connection with the shooting death of a police officer seven years earlier. A daylong confrontation with police ended when the commissioner, Gregore J. Sambor, authorized a helicopter to drop a bomb on the compound. The bomb started a fire that the commissioner ordered not be put out, and 11 people, including five children, died. The fire devastated the residential community, damaging 60 homes.

Mike Africa Jr, the son of MOVE 9 members Mike and Debbie Africa who was born in prison, spoke at the park.

“We are on the move to rise up and fight against this oppressive government.”

He said today’s event started with confusion and a lack of communication, and blamed the government for creating dissention.

“We have to recognize that we have only one enemy, and that’s the enemy that sent those police officers to kill Walter Wallace Jr.,” he said.

All week, Wallace’s shooting has been compared to the MOVE bombing as an example of police disregard for Black lives. Pam Africa, a MOVE member, lives on the block where Wallace was shot.

“I’m looking at my neighbor. And her standing between the police and her son and begging them not to shoot her son,” Africa said. “They should have came back with a social worker. They should have came back with a minister from the Police Department. They should have came back with somebody who deals with mental issues.”

—Jason Laughlin

2:31 PM - October 31, 2020
2:31 PM - October 31, 2020

Kids, decked out in Halloween costumes, join protesters

Zaira Buchanan
Tyger Williams / Staff Photographer
Zaira Buchanan

Zaira Buchanan, 4, dressed up as a Transformer for Halloween, stands on top of a car, raising his fist in the air as protesters march by along 53rd Street. His mother, Iquira Williams, cheered.

Earlier in the protest, the Miles family cheered on marchers as they walked past their home. They dressed as the family from The Incredibles.

The Miles family dresses up as the Incredibles as they wave from their porch on Addison st. as protesters march by on Oct. 31, 2020.
Heather Khalifa / Staff photographer
The Miles family dresses up as the Incredibles as they wave from their porch on Addison st. as protesters march by on Oct. 31, 2020.

—Tyger Williams, Heather Khalifa

2:14 PM - October 31, 2020
2:14 PM - October 31, 2020

Protesters arrive at Malcolm X Park

As a group of neighborhood children gathered for a Black Lives Matter Philly-sponsored costume contest in Malcolm X Park, hundreds of mostly young protesters of different racial backgrounds converged as well.

Police helicopters circled overhead as speakers took turns showing solidarity with the Wallace family. An array of reporters and photographers took up perch on the park’s jungle gym, craning to get a better view of the speeches.

Speakers facing the crowd, from a platform with speakers and microphones, are talking about police brutality, including the MOVE bombing that occurred only blocks away from where Wallace was shot and killed.

Activist YahNé Ndgo said of the Wallace family, “We are here for them. If they need us, they will call us and we will squad up.”

She said the group doesn’t need more protest marchers, but people to join when “strength and solidarity are needed.”

Gabe Bryant of Black Philly Radical Collective called on all Black organizations in the city to unite. “Our lives are under attack, and have been since we’ve been here in this country," he said.

“We’ve seen it, we’ve experienced it, and … we’re tired,” he said about police brutality.

He put out the call to “defund the police” and “abolish the police.” “Some of you all got a little quiet on the second one,” he said, adding, “we’ll get you there.”

— Maddie Hanna, Vinny Vella

1:55 PM - October 31, 2020
1:55 PM - October 31, 2020

Protesters march through West Philly

Hundreds of protesters marched east on Spruce Street chanting “Black Lives Matter” and “No justice no peace.” Some neighbors came out of their homes, holding up phones as the protesters passed. An older man standing in his doorway raised his fist in the air and smiled.

—Maddie Hanna

1:35 PM - October 31, 2020
1:35 PM - October 31, 2020

‘Black people aren’t born hating each other'

“This isn’t about Black on Black crime versus police brutality,” speaker Pete McFly said. “Black people aren’t born hating each other, Black people aren’t taught to hate each other.”

McFly blamed neighborhood issues on poverty and a lack of access to mental health services. He added that he used to work with officers from the 18th District in West Philadelphia for outreach with the community, but that they haven’t joined him in supporting the Wallace family.

“It shows me y’all are a gang and you don’t give an f— about the Black community," McFly said about the police.

“What we got to do is keep fighting, fighting, fighting,” McFly said. “At the end of the day, this is about us” sticking together. The crowd raised their fists and chanted, “Walter Wallace.”

— Vinny Vella, Maddie Hanna

1:22 PM - October 31, 2020
1:22 PM - October 31, 2020

Protesters stopped by police near 18th precinct

Crowd marches down Pine before being stopped at 56 & Pine to protest the death of Walter Wallace Jr. Wallace was shot and killed by police officers at the 6100 block of Locust Street in West Philadelphia on Monday, Oct. 26.
HEATHER KHALIFA / Staff Photographer
Crowd marches down Pine before being stopped at 56 & Pine to protest the death of Walter Wallace Jr. Wallace was shot and killed by police officers at the 6100 block of Locust Street in West Philadelphia on Monday, Oct. 26.

“How do we get out of this mess? Revolution, nothing less,” the crowd chants as they converged with police at 56th and Pine streets. One block down at 55th and Pine, police were stationed atop the 18th precinct building with cameras.

Many protesters took to the megaphone to stress the importance of voting on Tuesday and dismantling “the Trump-Pence regime.”

Protesters held signs that read “No justice no peace,” Black Lives Matter and “Blood on your f— hands.” A helicopter circled overhead.

Speakers invoked the name of Brandon Tate Brown, who was killed by Philadelphia Police in 2014.

“Can you imagine how that feels?” one speaker said, referring to the mother of people killed in police shootings. “You know who killed my son, and you refuse to tell me.”

On the edge of the crowd, a Black woman is addressing some of the bike cops, who are standing silently. “This is so sad, these freaking prejudice ass cops, killing all our black boys. ... This mother called an ambulance for her kid,” she said, her voice rising.

She turned her attention to a Black cop, accusing him of standing by the actions of white officers.

— Vinny Vella, Maddie Hanna

1:10 PM - October 31, 2020
1:10 PM - October 31, 2020

Neighbors cheer on protesters as they walk through West Philly

— Raishad Hardnett

1:04 PM - October 31, 2020
1:04 PM - October 31, 2020

Protesters gather near the home of Walter Wallace Jr.

A crowd gathers at to to protest the death of Walter Wallace Jr. Saturday, October 31, 2020. Wallace was shot and killed by police officers at the 6100 block of Locust Street in West Philadelphia on Monday, Oct. 26.
Tyger Williams / Staff Photographer
A crowd gathers at to to protest the death of Walter Wallace Jr. Saturday, October 31, 2020. Wallace was shot and killed by police officers at the 6100 block of Locust Street in West Philadelphia on Monday, Oct. 26.

Protesters gathered at 60th and Locust streets in West Philadelphia near where Walter Wallace Jr. was killed by police on Monday. The crowd ultimately decided to head to the police precinct at 55th and Pine after some neighbors expressed concerned over the location of today’s protest.

Activist YahNé Ndgo spoke to the crowd about the decision to move. “It’s really, really important. When we converge on a space where there has been trauma, and we make sure we do that in a way that is going to be good for the people who have experienced that trauma,” she said.

“...Helicopters are now flying above their homes, and there are massive numbers of police officers, all around their homes, police officers the same individuals who murdered a family member or community member. It is not good and right for us to stay here. We need to go."

The protesters, numbering around 250 according to police estimates, began to walk toward 55th and Pine.

— Raishad Hardnett

12:23 PM - October 31, 2020
12:23 PM - October 31, 2020

Police officers involved in killing still not identified

Four days after the killing of Walter Wallace Jr., the police department and city officials still have not identified the two officers who shot Wallace when responding late Monday afternoon to his family’s home on the 6100 block of Locust Street.

The 911 calls and body-worn camera footage will be released Wednesday, Nov. 4. The decision to wait to publicly release the body-camera footage and 911 calls from Wallace’s death was something of a surprise. City officials had shown the video to Wallace’s relatives on Thursday, and their lawyer, Shaka Johnson, said he thought the materials should be made public. Johnson told reporters the footage made clear Wallace was experiencing a mental health crisis, that people on his street were yelling to the police that he was mentally distressed, and that one officer told the other, “Shoot him,” before both began firing.

On Friday, the police officers' union reiterated that it also wanted the evidence released.

— Chris Palmer

11:37 AM - October 31, 2020
11:37 AM - October 31, 2020

As Philly approaches ‘unprecedented’ weekend, officials try to calm tension over police killing of Walter Wallace Jr.

National Guard troops took up posts throughout Philadelphia on Friday as the city prepared for weekend protests related to the police killing of Walter Wallace Jr. and the crescendo of a contentious election cycle — all poised to collide with the intensifying coronavirus pandemic.

Mayor Jim Kenney called it “perhaps the most unprecedented time” in city history.

The mayor and Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw also announced that they and Wallace’s family had agreed to wait until Wednesday to release the 911 calls and body-worn camera footage from the two officers who fatally shot Wallace on Monday. The hope, Kenney said, was to “provide enough time to calm tensions and for the recordings to be released in the most constructive manner possible.”

“There’s multiple crises going on at any given time,” Kenney said. “I can’t tell you what’s going to happen on Saturday, Sunday, and onward, but we take it a day at a time.”

— Chris Palmer