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Massive protests across the U.S. cities over the death of George Floyd and could be the new Coronavirus Outbreaks.
Cities across the nation were quiet Sunday morning after a night of unrest that saw dozens of demonstrations and police cars burn amid outrage over the death of George Floyd, an African-American man who died in the custody of Minneapolis police almost a week ago.
On a National Day Of Protest, tens of thousands of people took to the streets. Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta were among cities enacting curfews to try and quell the upheaval prompted by Floyd’s death, racial inequities and police brutality. In the Minneapolis and St. Paul, authorities used tear gas and smoke grenades to break up groups of protesters as the city continued to reel from several nights of fiery demonstrations.
In New York, fires burned and a video shared on social media appeared to show a Police Car Driving Into A Crowd Of Protesters. In Nashville, fires burned at City Hall. In Washington, protests escalated as President Donald Trump warned against “mob violence.”
Some journalists covering the demonstrations were injured by tear gas, smoke bombs and nonlethal projectiles fired by police. In Pittsburgh at least three local journalists were injured by protesters, police said.
Floyd, 46, died after officer Derek Chauvin kept his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes. Protesters also called out the names of other people of color killed by police, including Louisville’s Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old ER tech who was shot and killed by police in March.
Four police officers and three local journalists by protesters in Pittsburgh, the city Public Safety Department said. At least two police cars were set ablaze, as was an American flag, police said. State police were called in, and downtown property damage was “extensive” with dozens of businesses looted, the public safety department tweeted. Mayor Bill Peduto accused white, male “anarchists” of hijacking the protest.
“To those vandalizing downtown, you will be arrested,” Peduto said. “You have turned on the very mission, and more importantly – the people, you supposedly marched for.”
An “I Can’t Breathe” rally on the waterfront in Juneau, Alaska, was joined by local residents, elected officials – and police officers. Floyd uttered “I can’t breathe” multiple times in the moments before he died. Juneau Police Chief Ed Mercer said he and other members of his department attended the rally to show solidarity with residents, saying he won’t “tolerate excessive use of force.” The rally featured Alaska Native songs performed by members of Yees Ku Oo dance group, a multi-cultural group from Juneau.
“I’m here just to show that we are in this community and let people know that our voices matter and for people to stop killing us,” Jennifer Gross, an African-American woman, told the Juneau Empire.
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz promised to bring “the full force of goodness and righteousness” as law enforcement enforced a curfew in Minneapolis. “Don’t go out of your homes; don’t make things more difficult,” Walz said.
As part of the state’s increased enforcement, the Minnesota National Guard said more than 4,100 service members had been deployed to the Twin Cities and projected more than 10,000 would soon be called up.
After an 8 p.m. curfew began, law enforcement fired tear gas to break up gatherings and try to prevent a repeat of the unrest of Thursday night when protestors breached a police precinct and set it on fire. In the Fifth District, some demonstrators chanted “Hands up, don’t shoot!” Police officers fired nonlethal projectiles toward masses of people. In the Third District, police pushed back a group headed across the Mississippi River Bridge under a heavy barrage of flash-bangs and smoke grenades.
However, Minneapolis’ streets steadily grew calmer as the night went on, and Corrections Commissioner Paul Schnell said the tough response would remain as long as it takes to “quell this situation.”
In Los Angeles, police cars burned after thousands of protesters gathered at Pan Pacific Park spilled out into streets. Mayor Eric Garcetti asked for the National Guard to be sent in to the nation’s second-largest city as protesters torched police cars and vandalized and burglarized stores while clashing with lines of officers. Garcetti said he asked Gov. Gavin Newsom for 500 to 700 members of the Guard.
Elsewhere in California, a few hundred chanting demonstrators marched through San Francisco while northeast of San Diego police fired tear gas to try to break up a large group that defied orders to leave the La Mesa police headquarters.
Fires in Nashville led Mayor John Cooper to declare a state of civil emergency. Police announced a 10 p.m. curfew for the city, and Gov. Bill Lee deployed the National Guard. Dozens of protesters had gathered on the steps of Nashville’s criminal courthouse and City Hall after a rally and march. Demonstrators smashed windows with rocks and other materials, drawing a swarm of police. The situation at the building appeared to subside around 7:30 p.m.
By 8:15 p.m., fire was visible from a first-floor office at the courthouse. A short time later, police with riot gear arrived as a fire burned inside a window at City Hall. Officers deployed tear gas as demonstrators clustered in the center of Public Square Park.
— Staff of The Tennessean
The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Confirmed One Fatality, And Said They Were Investigating “Multiple” Shootings, none of which were officer-involved, after a second night of violence raged through parts of downtown. Things came to a head in a haze of tear gas a little after 9 p.m., about two hours after city officials asked protest organizers to wrap up their events and clear the streets. Several protesters were arrested and widespread vandalism was reported in the aftermath. It was a far different scene earlier in the day, when thousands of demonstrators marched peacefully through Downtown streets chanting slogans such as “Black Lives Matter” and “No Justice — No Peace.”
– Tim Evans, Indianapolis Star