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Batts says curfew will stay at least through weekend

Dashing hope that a few days of relative peace could bring an early return to normal, Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony W. Batts said Thursday night that the curfew imposed after rioting Monday will remain in place through the weekend.

In a news conference at police headquarters, Batts said the city faces at least two large demonstrations this weekend to protest the death of Freddie Gray after injuries received in police custody when he was arrested April 12. Batts said the city continues to learn of new protests being planned.

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Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has come under pressure to lift the curfew, which took effect Tuesday night. The American Civil Liberties of Maryland released a statement Thursday calling on the mayor to end the restrictions on being on the streets after 10 p.m., saying the curfew is "continuing at the expense of Baltimore residents' constitutional freedoms."

Deborah Jeon, the ACLU legal director said the mayor's condition for ending the curfew -- the restoration of "calm and order" -- has been met. "Therefore the curfew is no longer serving its intended purpose," she said.

Batts rejected the call.

"We still have a weekend to make it through," he said.

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