DETROIT (WWJ) – Detroit’s Police Chief is calling the River Days Festival over the weekend and fireworks Monday the safest in recent history.
Four minor were detained for breaking curfew during the fireworks, and their parents were ticketed. There was just one person arrested that night, Chief James Craig said, and there were no arrests during the three-day River Days event.
Standing alongside representatives of the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, NAACP, Citizen Radio Patrol and others on Tuesday, Craig thanked multiple community partners whom he said came through to help when the Detroit City Council rejected his request for an expanded four-day curfew for minors.
“We called on our community to step up, assist us, so that we wouldn’t be saddled with the responsibility of supervision and safety,” Craig said. “It worked.”
Craig said the city was also assisted by neighboring police departments, and about 165 people signed up to serve as “Volunteer Angels” to be the eyes and ears for police during the events.
Among those volunteers was Muhsin Muhammad, president of Grandmont Patrol.
“In 65 years of life I’ve experienced a lot of fairs and fireworks,” Muhammad said. “Never have I ever experience so many happy people listening to music, having fun, dancing and helping each other.”
“There is four letters in a word that would express what I experienced this weekend: C A L M, calm,” he said.
There was one fatality reported in the area Monday night, when police say a man who’d been shot rolled his SUV into a street barricade set up for the fireworks show. That shooting, however, police said, “had nothing to do with the fireworks.”