Curfew ends in Wisconsin city ahead of visit from Joe Biden

Full Screen
1 / 5

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

EDS NOTE: OBSCENITY - A protester holds a flag during a Black Lives Matter protest Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020, in Kenosha, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

KENOSHA, Wis. – A curfew that was in place in Kenosha for more than a week after the police shooting of Jacob Blake was lifted Wednesday, another sign of increasing calm in the southeastern Wisconsin city that has been the epicenter of the latest eruption over racial injustice.

The move came a day after the curfew was targeted as unconstitutional in a federal lawsuit and the day before former Vice President Joe Biden planned to visit, marking his first campaign stop in Wisconsin in nearly two years.

The curfew was enacted after Blake, a Black man, was shot by a police officer on Aug. 23. Jacob Blake Sr. on Wednesday told WGN America’s "NewsNation” that his son is out of a hospital intensive care unit.

The shooting of Blake, captured on cellphone video, sparked protests that resulted in buildings being burned and vandalized and in the shootings of three demonstrators, two of whom died. Seventeen-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse has been charged in the Aug. 25 slayings; his attorney says it was self defense.

Biden said Wednesday that the officer who shot Blake should be charged, a sharp contrast to Trump’s support-the-police message when he visited Kenosha a day earlier. The president met with law enforcement, toured some of the damage and called the violence “domestic terrorism,” and made almost no mention of Blake.

Biden also plans to meet with members of Blake's family, something Trump did not do, and hold a community meeting.

Protests have been peaceful for more than a week, other than a few minor skirmishes during Trump's visit.

“The last several nights have been relatively peaceful in the community, and in the judgment of law enforcement, it is appropriate to remove the curfew,” Mayor John Antaramian said. However, he held out the possibility that the curfew may return, saying “criminal activity will not be tolerated.”