DENVER (KDVR) — The temporary restraining order (TRO) that is preventing the Denver Police Department from using less lethal weapons will expire Friday night. Now, an attorney has filed a motion asking for an extension of the TRO, which the City and County of Denver opposes.
A lawsuit filed on June 4 asked a judge to take immediate action and prevent the Denver Police Department from using less lethal tactics, like pepper balls.
The suit was filed as a class-action and named four protesters who said they were negatively affected by the police tactics. The suit also included video clips and photographs of incidents recorded on social media and elsewhere.
A federal judge granted, in part, a temporary restraining order on June 5, which prohibits the Denver Police Department from using projectiles and chemical weapons against peaceful protesters.
With Friday being Juneteenth, the celebration and commemoration of the end of slavery, the attorney is asking that the city not have access to those less lethal weapons, especially during this time.
The motion states:
The coming celebration of Junteenth itself calls for the extension of this TRO. For a week, demonstrations to combat police violence and systematic racism were met with ‘extreme tactics’ and ‘excessive force likely [to cause] injury sufficient to chill a person of ordinary firmness from continuing to engage in … political protest.’ This Court’s entry of a TRO stopped this violence, and in the intervening 10 days, demonstrations have continued without the property destruction or violence warned of by Commander Phelan. The demonstrations have and will continue. This weekend, when many demonstrators and celebrators will take to the streets to honor and remember the end of slavery, Denver Police cannot be allowed to return to the unlimited use of chemical and KIP weapons that necessitated the entry of this TRO in the first place.
DPD issued the following statement Tuesday evening:
“The Denver Police Department respects the legal process in this matter, has complied with the temporary restraining order and will continue doing so if it’s extended.”