This story was originally published at 2:13 pm on June 2nd. It has been updated.
A walk planned for Peace Love Unity in Newport and Middletown on Sunday, June 7th has been cancelled, due to “threats made against Aquidneck Island on social media”.
The event, which was published on Monday, invited the public to “join the Butler Basketball Club along with local law enforcement and town officials to show your support for our community in a walk of solidarity”.
“Unfortunately, we have to postpone our event. Due to threats made against Aquidneck Island on social media, we feel it is our priority to put everyone’s safety first. This was a family event. This doesn’t take away from our goal, and we will resume at a time when it is safe to do so. Our hearts break 💔”, Butler Basketball Club posted
Tom Shevlin, Communications Officer for the City of Newport, told What’s Up Newp on Tuesday afternoon that he was not aware of any known credible threats. Shevlin referred us for further comment to Newport Police Department.
What’s Up Newp also reached out to the Mayor, City Manager, and Police Chief, and Butler Basketball Club on Tuesday afternoon regarding the alleged threats mentioned in the event cancellation notice. We’ll update this story when and if we hear back from local authorities.
This story was originally published at 2:13 pm, as of 9:35 pm we had not received any kind of further response from the Mayor, City Manager, or Police Chief.
The City issued the following on Wednesday morning;
STATEMENT ON PUBLIC SAFETY RELATED TO THE ONGOING NATIONWIDE PROTESTS
NEWPORT, R.I. (Wednesday, June 3, 2020) – The City of Newport issued the following statement related to the ongoing nationwide protests.
As the nation continues to mourn the murder of George Floyd, the City of Newport stands ready to do our part to protect and support all those who wish to exercise their Constitutional right to peacefully assemble.
While we are not aware of any credible threats to the City of Newport or Aquidneck Island, our public safety personnel are actively taking precautions to prepare for any potential unrest.
As a City, we strive every day to ensure the health and safety of our residents, business owners, and visitors alike.
At this point, there are no plans to institute a curfew or place any restrictions on commercial corridors, however we are closely monitoring developments around the state and the region and are working in close coordination with our local and statewide partners in order to ensure the safety of our community and prevent any destruction of property.
During a protest on Monday night in Providence, violence and destruction erupted across downtown resulting in dozens of arrests, several police officers being hurt, businesses looted and damaged, and a police cruiser being set on fire.
In a press conference on Tuesday, Governor Raimondo announced she’s activating the R.I. National Guard to assist state and local police in the coming days.