RALEIGH – The ACLU of North Carolina sent letters to the cities of Raleigh, Asheville, Greensboro, and Charlotte today raising legal and constitutional concerns with local officials’ responses to the ongoing protests against police violence and brutality.
The issued letters condemn violence by Charlotte, Raleigh, and Asheville police against protestors and warn against further use of tear gas, flash bangs, rubber bullets, and other weapons.
The ACLU also sent letters to Raleigh, Asheville, and Greensboro detailing the legal and constitutional concerns with the curfews implemented in those cities, noting that these broad and extended curfews violate the First Amendment as well as the right to due process and equal protection under the law.
“The curfews are an overbroad restraint on speech and the right to petition, and invite arbitrary and discriminatory enforcement against communities of color, in violation of the U.S. and North Carolina Constitutions,” said Kristi Graunke, Legal Director of the ACLU of North Carolina.
The letters come after multiple reports of cities implementing curfews and city police responding violently to protests calling for an end to racist policing in the wake of the killing of George Floyd. In their letters, the ACLU of North Carolina warned city officials that the organization would be closely monitoring the municipalities’ response and hold them accountable for any constitutional violations that occur.