WASHINGTON D.C. — This article was originally posted to WJLA in Washington, D.C.
Authorities in the nation’s capital are expecting Saturday to be the largest demonstration against police brutality in the city since the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy told reporters Friday that local officials were projecting between 100,000 and 200,000 protesters.
Metropolitan Police Department Chief Peter Newsham wouldn’t commit to a number but predicted it would be smaller than the 1 million people who attended the Women’s March in 2017.
Washington has seen daily protests for a week, and they have largely been peaceful, with people marching back and forth from the White House to the Capitol and the Lincoln Memorial.
On Saturday, a large group even walked into the District from Virginia, across the Arlington Memorial Bridge.
There were zero arrests during demonstrations in D.C. on Thursday and Friday, and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser canceled the curfew that had been in place since Monday. She said she will decide on Saturday morning if it will be reinstated.
A number of D.C. churches and theaters have said they will open their lobbies so people can cool off.
Military vehicles and officers in fatigues could be seen closing off much of downtown Saturday morning.
The blocks inside the perimeter surrounding the White House were calm, with joggers and cyclists taking advantage of the open streets before the daytime temperature rises.
Some people were preparing supplies for protesters, including water bottles and granola bars.
The White House has been fortified with new fencing and extra security precautions amid a week of largely peaceful protests that at times grew violent.
President Donald Trump is at the White House, with no public events on the schedule.