The Louisville Metro Police Department announced a ban on all street marches and protest caravans on Sunday afternoon, following tensions over the weekend that left 12 people arrested.
As the Louisville Courier-Journal reports, officials have taken action after more than 70 consecutive days of protests surrounding the killing of Breonna Taylor, who died at the hands of police serving a no-knock warrant.
Going forward, pedestrians participating in protests must walk on sidewalks. Neither cars nor pedestrians will be allowed to block intersections. Failure to comply will result in citation or arrest, according to police spokesperson Jessie Halladay.
Protesters, however, refuse to be silenced, with some activists calling the move an “intimidation factor.”
“The objective and the goal is to disrupt just as much as [police] disrupt people’s lives,” Chanelle Helm, a member of Black Lives Matter Louisville, told the Courier-Journal. “They claim that they’re worried about the laws, but they break the laws every time they get out there.”
On Saturday, 12 people were arrested, including eight who were charged with felonies, after protesters allegedly flipped tables at Fourth Street Live, an entertainment and retail complex. Trash cans were also set on fire, which drew sharp criticism from law enforcement.
“This evening, protesters, during their march, blocked roadways, surrounded vehicles that tried to avoid the protest, shot paintballs [at)]passing motorists, destroyed property at Fourth Street Live while it was occupied with patrons, set trash cans on fire and then continued to Jefferson Square,” police spokesperson Lamont Washington told the Courier-Journal in another report. “Based off these actions, the assembly was deemed unlawful.”