Campaigners plan to hold 12 demonstrations at surprise locations and times for 12 days, the Detroit Free Press reported. They began Friday morning with a prayer circle of about 30 people at Cadillac Place, where the state financial review board was meeting.
Under Michigan law, a state takeover would give all local authority to a manager appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder. Opponents say taking power away from elected local leaders is unconstitutional.
"We vow to bring 12 days of action against the financial review team and Gov. Snyder so they understand they can't dismiss democracy," the Rev. Charles Williams II said after security guards broke up Friday's demonstration.
A few days ago, Snyder proposed naming a nine-member board to run Detroit. Under Mayor Dave Bing's counter-proposal, the mayor would be given the power of an emergency manager, stripping the city council of most of its authority.