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'It was a very good dialogue' says mayor, as Buffalo Police meet with protesters

Thomas O'Neil-White

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown is promising to listen to proposals for changes in city policing, while attacking those who vandalized and looted Saturday and Monday night.

On Tuesday, the leadership of the Buffalo Police Department, led by Commissioner Byron Lockwood, met with protestors in Niagara Square. Brown said it went well.

"It was a very good dialogue, a very positive dialogue, and Commissioner Lockwood committed to having other meetings with the protesters and to work with them on issues and concerns as they relate to policing in the City of Buffalo," Brown said.

Brown said he is willing to work with protesters. Still, he said there is no excuse for some of the violence and looting which took place.

"We respect people's right to peacefully protest, but we cannot, as a community, allow for people who want to vandalize things, who want to loot small businesses and other businesses," he said. "There is just absolutely no reason for the kind of violence, for the kind of vandalism, for the looting, for the setting things on fire that we saw yesterday."

On Tuesday, Brown helped clean up some of the mess along Bailey Avenue, along with Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul and State Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes. Bailey was the scene of a protest-turned-violent Monday night, injuring one Buffalo police officer and two New York State troopers. Two civilians were wounded by gunfire, though the source of those shots is under investigation..

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.
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