John Perlich, spokesman for Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry, issues this statement from the mayor at 9:45 p.m. Friday.

"Our country and community are hurting as a result of the passing of George Floyd. It's a terrible tragedy for our society. Mr. Floyd's death did not need to happen, and we pray tonight for his family and the many others who've faced injustices.

"The City of Fort Wayne respects the rights of individuals to participate in peaceful demonstrations. Tonight's demonstration in downtown Fort Wayne began peacefully. As the demonstration moved along, it began to get more aggressive and the safety of the public was being put at risk. The Fort Wayne Police Department ultimately had to respond in a manner to protect the public's safety.

"It's vital that we come together united as a city that cares about one another and supports each other. That's what we've been committed to in an effort to make Fort Wayne the best city possible. Now more than ever we need to respectfully and peacefully engage in productive dialogue and understanding as we grieve together, knowing that we can have better days ahead of us."

—Mayor Tom Henry

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