Potential Demonstrations in Oakland

Date Posted: April 20th, 2021 @ 3:03 PM
Last Updated: April 20th, 2021 @ 3:05 PM

Dear Oakland Community,

The City of Oakland—like many cities across the country—anticipates spontaneous demonstrations in response to the verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin in the killing of George Floyd. These demonstrations may continue through the week.

We are aware that a group plans to gather today, April 20, at 4 p.m. in Frank H. Ogawa Plaza. In addition, there is the potential for other spontaneous demonstrations to occur. We will continue to monitor the situation and share updates if warranted to keep our community informed and safe.

Oakland has and will continue to facilitate peaceful demonstrations about social injustice and racial inequality. The City calls for calm and peace; for those who are going to take part in gatherings please do so peacefully. If you are holding a gathering, please email opdnegotiators@oaklandca.gov or call (510) 362-3533 so OPD can help facilitate.

Experience shows that while the vast majority of individuals are there to express free speech, outside agitators often use the cover of large groups to engage in criminal activity such as graffiti, window smashing and dumpster fires. The City asks Oaklanders that are justly expressing their freedom of speech to be mindful not to inadvertently provide cover for those with an intent to damage property or injure others. As a reminder, Oakland Municipal Code prohibits individuals from carrying a club, spray paint, paint balloons, shield, hammer, wrench or fire accelerant while participating an any demonstration. Violators could be fined up to $1,000 and face up to six months of jail time. The City will not tolerate vandalism or violence.

Demonstrations may impact our commercial and residential neighborhoods and streets throughout Oakland as well as freeways and bridges. We ask everyone to be mindful when traveling in and around our city. The City and the Oakland Police Department are prepared to provide safe places and spaces for demonstrations as they occur.

Please consider these safety tips:

  • Be sure your business and home are well lit. Good lighting increases visibility—and also increases the effectiveness of any video surveillance system.
  • If possible, park your car in a secure, off-street location.
  • Bring in your trash receptacles and dumpsters or secure them.
  • Bring in any outdoor furniture, signs, flowerpots or other unsecured fixtures that could be used to break a window.
  • Keep items away from windows. Secure valuable items and do not leave any money or items you deem valuable unsecured.
  • If you have a surveillance system, be sure it is in good working order and is turned on. Save recordings to help document criminal activity.

OPD uses a free, web-based application called NIXLE to provide timely updates to our community about traffic disruptions or suggested alternate transportation routes. If you have not yet signed up for NIXLE, we encourage you to do so. Text your zip code to 888777 to opt-in, or visit www.nixle.com. We also encourage everyone to sign up and follow OPD on Twitter @oaklandpoliceca.

Report suspicious activity—if you know something, say something. Call 911 for emergencies and (510) 777-3333 for non-emergencies.


Ed Reiskin
City Administrator