[Special Coverage] George Floyd protests spread nationwide in the US

A check-cashing business burns during protests in Minneapolis on Friday. John Minchillo/AP

Protests have erupted in at least 20 US cities over the death of unarmed black man George Floyd at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The former officer, seen in a video with his knee on Floyd’s neck, has been charged with murder and manslaughter. Ben Westcott, Brett McKeehan, Laura Smith-Spark, Ed Upright specially for the CNN.

Downtown Phoenix vandalized by protesters, say police

Protesters have left behind a trail of destruction in downtown Phoenix, Arizona, police said.

“Property throughout the downtown Phoenix area has been vandalized as some demonstrators engage in criminal behavior, breaking windows and doors to municipal and private business and destroy cars parked along the street,” Phoenix Police Department tweeted.

Phoenix is one of more than 20 cities across the US which saw protests on Friday night in the wake of George Floyd’s death.

“An Unlawful Assembly has been declared in the area around 6th Ave & Washington where demonstrators have been gathering,” Phoenix Police Department tweeted.

“Due to criminal activity and a current danger to our community, people must leave the area including sidewalks, private property or roadways.”

Police arrest nearly 200 in Houston protest

Nearly 200 people have been arrested in Houston, Texas, after protests Friday night.

Most will be charged with obstructing a roadway, according to a tweet from the Houston Police Department.

The department also said four of its officers sustained minor injuries and eight police vehicles were damaged.

Houston Police Officer’s Union President Joe Gamaldi earlier said officers had been hospitalized but did not say how many.

“Our officers who were attacked are in the hospital, patrol cars ruined, businesses damaged,” Gamaldi said in a tweet.
“This is not who we are as a City and as a community. We will protect your right to protest, but we will not allow our city to decay into chaos.”

Dozens arrested in Minneapolis as state plans to mobilize 1,700 National Guard soldiers

From CNN’s Joe Sutton

About 50 people have been arrested as protests continue across Minneapolis.

More than 2,500 officers are helping to keep the peace, Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington told a news conference.

This is one of the largest civil police forces the state of Minnesota has ever seen, he said. But resources are still stretched thin, with thousands of protesters estimated to have turned out across the city.

“We recognized that we simply did not, even with the numbers that I’m talking about, have enough officers and personnel to meet all of those missions safely and successfully. We picked missions based on our capacity,” Harrington said.

Officers focused their efforts on downtown and the 5th Precinct area, he said.

A request has been made to substantially increase the number of National Guard officers available to bolster the city’s response, Harrington said.

Major General Jon Jensen, of the Minnesota National Guard, said he believed there could be more than 1,700 National Guard soldiers in the area by Sunday.

This would be the largest deployment in the state of Minnesota’s history.

“At the conclusion of tomorrow, I believe that we will have over 1,700 soldiers in support of the Department of Public Safety in the city of Minneapolis and the city of Saint Paul,” Jensen said.

Jensen noted that people may have heard that President Donald Trump directed the Pentagon to put units of the United States Army on alert for a possible operation in Minneapolis.

“While we were not consulted with as it relates to that, I do believe is a prudent move to provide other options available for the governor, if the governor elects to use those resources,” Jensen said.

Portland police declare a riot in the city and order protesters to disperse

In a statement on Twitter, Portland Police declared a riot is taking place in the city and ordered crowds to go home.

“Disperse now or you will be subject to gas, projectiles, and other means necessary for dispersal,” police said early on Saturday morning.

Portland is one of more than 20 cities across the US which saw protests on Friday night in the wake of George Floyd’s death.

Earlier Portland police said that there had been “significant vandalism” in the city related to the protests, as well as a shooting, although they didn’t provide any additional details.

“This event has been declared an unlawful assembly. If you do not go home now, force will be used to disperse you,” Portland police said on their official Twitter.

According to police, Portland’s Justice Center had been attacked by protesters and set on fire.

Man shot and killed as protests continue in Detroit

From CNN’s Jennifer Henderson

A 19-year-old man was killed after shots were fired into a crowd of protesters in Detroit late Friday, the city’s police department said in a statement.

Police said the shots were fired by an unknown suspect in a gray Dodge Durango, with the victim later dying in hospital.

Detroit police cannot confirm if the victim was part of the protests, but the shooting happened downtown where the protests were taking place.

Earlier, Detroit Police Chief James Craig said a person had been arrested after trying to run an officer over.

“I will not stand by and let a small minority, criminals, come in here, attack our officers and make our community unsafe. Just know, we are not going to tolerate it,” Craig said.

Situation in Minneapolis remains “incredibly dangerous,” governor says

The situation in Minneapolis remains “incredibly dangerous” as protests continue in the city, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said in a press conference early Saturday.

Multiple law enforcement authorities are responding to the unrest across the city, after a number of protesters ignored an 8 p.m. curfew set by the state government.

“This is the largest civilian deployment in Minnesota history that we have out there today,” Walz said.
The governor said officials cannot arrest people while they are trying to hold ground.

“This is an operation that has never been done in Minnesota,” Walz added.

Bricks, graffiti and shattered glass have been left behind by protesters who demonstrated outside CNN Center in Atlanta, Georgia, on Friday night.

It was the site of a tense standoff between police and protesters, who threw projectiles and even a firework at law enforcement officials.

“This scene was chaotic. We saw at least two officers injured in clashes with demonstrators,” said CNN’s Nick Valencia, who was on the ground.

Denver mayor: “This violent distraction only divides us”

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock has told of his sorrow over “needless, senseless and destructive” scenes as protests continue in the Colorado capital.

“Once again, the violent actions of a few are drowning out legitimate calls for justice. Twice today, we had peaceful, successful demonstration where people expressed their outrage over the death of #GeorgeFloyd,” Hancock said.
“We saw them, we heard them, and they respected their cause. Unfortunately, another element with selfish motives and reckless intentions infiltrated tonight’s demonstration and incited violence with homemade explosives, rocks, bottles, graffiti and vandalism.
“This is not who we are, and calmer heads must prevail. Our police officers have a sworn duty to maintain everyone’s safety – and they will. People are crying out to be heard, but this violent distraction only divides us.”
Police have deployed pepper balls in the city’s downtown area due to “civil disobedience,” authorities said.

There have been no reports on the number of arrests or damage in Denver so far.

Arrests in Minneapolis as protesters ignore curfew, dispersal orders

From CNN’s Chris Boyette

Minneapolis law enforcement officers have arrested a number of people who ignored dispersal orders in the area around the city’s 5th precinct, according to the state’s Department of Public Safety.

“Leave the Fifth Precinct area now so the troopers and officers on the ground can clear the area and enforce the curfew. 350 troopers and officers are in the area,” the department said in a tweet.

It comes as protesters ignored an 8 p.m. curfew imposed by the city.

CNN’s Sara Sidner said tear gas and rubber bullets have been used by police to try to disperse the crowd.

Hundreds of police have been advancing street by street toward the protesters, who have been creating barricades while chanting, “I can’t breathe.”

“We have heard people here say, ‘Look, we are not going to stop fighting about this right now,’ because they don’t feel that they’ve ever been heard enough and now they’ve just unleashed all emotions,” Sidner said from Minneapolis.

Shots fired at law enforcement officers in Minneapolis

From CNN’s Chris Boyette

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety says shots have been fired at law enforcement officers near the 5th precinct in Minneapolis.

In a Twitter post, the department said no troopers or officers were injured.

“Leave the area or you will be arrested,” the tweet said.

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson has called for demonstrations in the city to remain peaceful, saying he supported protesters’ “calls for justice” over the death of George Floyd.

In a Twitter post, Johnson added that some people with “other agendas” had destroyed property.

“I understand the outrage, and I feel this pain deeply,” Johnson said. “What happened in Minneapolis is unacceptable. But please, remain peaceful.”

350 troopers to clear area near Minneapolis police precinct

From CNN’s Jennifer Henderson

The Minneapolis Department of Public Safety said on its official Twitter account that 350 troopers are near the city’s 5th precinct to clear the area and enforce curfew.

It comes after a number of protesters earlier ignored calls from police and state officials to return to their homes after an 8 p.m. curfew was established for the weekend in Minneapolis and Saint Paul.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz called for residents to obey the curfew.

“I urge residents to comply with 8pm curfew and go home immediately. Law enforcement needs to respond to emergencies, restore order, and keep Minnesotans safe,” Walz said in a tweet.

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) has declared an unlawful assembly in the downtown area of the city, with officials telling CNN that protesters will be arrested if they disobey the order and stay there.

“We have declared an unlawful assembly throughout Downtown LA. From the 10 freeway to the 101 & the 110 freeway to Alameda. This is being made following repeated acts of violence & property damage. Residents should stay inside. Business should close. Those on the street are to leave the area,” LAPD said in a statement.

The LAPD said two officers were injured in protests Friday night.

“There was one officer that got hurt at 7:32 this evening and was transported to a local hospital with unknown injuries. Also, at 8:39, an officer needed help after he was hit with a bottle at Seventh St. and Hope St. and was also transported to the hospital. I don’t have their conditions because the situation is still quite fluid,” the LAPD said in a statement.

Bail for former officer Derek Chauvin set at $500,000, document shows

From CNN Legal Analyst Joey Jackson

Bail for ex-Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin has been set at $500,000, according to the criminal complaint filed in the 4th Judicial District Court of Minnesota.

According to the document, there have been no conditions set for his release.

The document doesn’t indicate that Chauvin is out on bail, but it does say that if he does bond out, bail is set for $500,000.

The order of detention box is not checked because Chauvin was not ordered detained or remanded.

Dallas police mass in front of headquarters amid protests

From CNN’s Andy Rose

The entrance to the Dallas Police Department headquarters has been blocked by dozens of cruisers and officers, as protesters march to the downtown building.

A line of officers is keeping people away.

A tweet from Dallas Police says one officer received non-life threatening injuries in the response to Friday night protests over the death of George Floyd.

Chief Renee Hall told KTVT that some protesters threw bricks at officers.

“We are an organization that upholds peaceful protests, but we will not be the target,” Hall said.

National Guard activated in Georgia as governor declares state of emergency

From CNN’s Jennifer Henderson

As many as 500 National Guard troops have been activated to protect people and property in Atlanta, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced late Friday.

Kemp said he is also issuing a state of emergency for Fulton County due to protests in the state capital.

“At the request of Mayor @KeishaBottoms & in consultation with public safety & emergency preparedness officials, I have issued a State of Emergency for Fulton County to activate as many as 500 @GeorgiaGuard troops to protect people & property in Atlanta,” Kemp’s Twitter post said.
“They will deploy immediately to assist (local law enforcement) who are working tirelessly to subdue unlawful activity & restore peace. We will continue to make all state resources available to local leaders during this emergency situation.”

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