Baltimore streets previously rocked by riots were eerily quiet early today as residents obeyed an all-night curfew enforced by 3,000 police and National Guardsmen. The curfew, which went into effect at 10pm, got off to a not-so-promising start, however, as about 200 protesters initially ignored the warnings of police and the pleas of community activists to disperse. Some threw water bottles or lay down on the ground. A line of police behind riot shields hurled tear gas canisters and fired pepper balls at the crowd and slowly advanced forward. Demonstrators picked up the canisters and hurled them back at officers. But the crowd rapidly dispersed and was down to just a few dozen people within minutes.
Just before midnight, Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts declared the curfew, which ended at 5am, a success. "We do not have a lot of active movement throughout the city as a whole," he said. "Tonight I think the biggest thing is the citizens are safe, the city is stable. We hope to maintain it that way." Batts said a total of 10 people were arrested after the curfew went into effect: two for looting, one for disorderly conduct, and seven for violating the curfew. The curfew, which will be in place for at least a week, applies to everybody in the city, reports the Baltimore Sun, although exceptions will be made for emergency workers and people traveling to or from work or school. The morning rush hour is currently under way, schools are reopening this morning, and tonight's Orioles game will go ahead—minus fans. (Read more Baltimore stories.)