Rumors swirled yesterday morning on social media: An Antifa-led protest was headed to Westport.
Several dozen protesters did gather at Jesup Green. Assisted by Westport police, they marched across the Ruth Steinkraus Cohen Bridge to Norwalk, then returned. They ended up — chanting “Black lives matter!” — at the police station on Jesup Road, where Chief Foti Koskinas spoke movingly to them of his experiences as a first-generation America.
But last night — out of caution, fear or both — at least 2 downtown businesses boarded their windows.
Tiffany on the Post Road …
… and the Sunglass Hut on Main Street. (Photos/Chip Stephens)
There were no reports of any demonstrators.
And certainly no looting.
Westport Police Chief Foti Koskinas and 1st Selectman Jim Marpe issued this statement today:
We certainly can be counted among the many municipal and law enforcement leaders who were horrified and deeply disappointed by the recent tragedy in Minneapolis.
The Westport Police Department, like so many others across our country, has worked diligently to build relationships and trust within our communities; a trust which we and our national partners in law enforcement recognize must be incrementally earned and always carefully maintained. Fostering this trust among our community through a steadfast dedication to public service continues to be our top priority.
During difficult times such as these, it is important to reaffirm that the Westport Police Department remains resolutely committed to pursuing the goals of its mission statement through the fair and equitable treatment of all of those we encounter.
Marpe noted: “Westport’s commitment to fairness, equality and social justice is stronger than ever, and is reflected daily in the actions of our Police Department, as well as in all town departments and activities.”