Charleston Police drop charges against 27 arrested in May during post-riot protests

VIDEO: Charleston Police drop charges against 27 arrested in May during post-riot protests

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The city of Charleston confirmed Tuesday municipal charges against 27 people filed the day after riots in downtown Charleston had been dropped.

The charges, according to city spokesman Jack O’Toole, were for curfew violations or failure to disperse. They were not connected to violent rioting that left property and businesses vandalized the night before across the downtown peninsula, he said.

The people whose charges were dropped, O’Toole said, were not at all violent nor did they incite violence or other criminal activities. They were not involved at all with the Saturday riots, he said.

The riots followed a daylong protest in downtown Charleston that began in Marion Square related to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25. His death, while in police custody, sparked a wave of protests and some riots across the nation after cellphone footage showing a police officer pinning Floyd to the ground with his knee to Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes surfaced. Floyd was heard in the video saying, “I can’t breathe” and died shortly after becoming unresponsive.

Charges connected with the Saturday night rioting downtown still stand, O’Toole said.

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