Demonstrations in dozens of cities around the U.S. over the death of George Floyd, an African American man who died in custody of Minneapolis police, turned violent again Saturday night. Despite curfews and troops from National Guard units in at least a dozen states being called up to help stop violence and looting, the unrest continued late Saturday.
Here are the latest updates:
5:00 am EDT - Several reporters were assaulted and injured while covering the unrest in various locations Friday and Saturday.
In Minneapolis, a freelance photographer was struck in the eye by a projectile Friday. She tweeted that the injury would leave her permanently blind in that eye. Other journalists in Minneapolis also reported being struck by rubber bullets or teargas used by police, including this Los Angeles Times reporter, who said police fired tear gas "point blank" at a group of journalists:
Minnesota State Patrol just fired tear gas at reporters and photographers at point blank range. pic.twitter.com/r7X6J7LKo8— Molly Hennessy-Fiske (@mollyhf) May 31, 2020
Minneapolis police also arrested several journalists, including a CNN crew on Friday and a photographer for a local TV station on Saturday.
In Seattle, after a private security guard protecting a local TV team disarmed two protesters who removed rifles from a disabled police car Saturday afternoon, protesters surrounded the crew ad accused them of being police officers.
Early Saturday morning, a Fox News reporter and his crew were struck and chased by protesters near the White House.
4:30 am EDT - The police station in Ferguson, Missouri, where the 2014 death of a black teenager shot by a police officer sparked civil disorder, was damaged Saturday by protesters.
Here’s a look at the damage that’s been done at the Ferguson Police Department. All non-essential personnel have evacuated the building. pic.twitter.com/U6WqDSEA4G— St. Louis County PD (@stlcountypd) May 31, 2020
3:30 AM EDT - Saturday night and early Sunday were comparatively quiet in Minneapolis – the epicenter of the protests over the death of George Floyd, who died while in Minneapolis police custody. Police, backed by over 4,100 Minnesota National Guard troops, moved quickly to enforce an 8 pm curfew.
There were a few confrontations with groups of protesters who tried to remain out past the curfew, and a video posted to Twitter allegedly showed police and guard troops firing paintballs at residents who were just outside their homes.
Share widely: National guard and MPD sweeping our residential street. Shooting paint canisters at us on our own front porch. Yelling “light em up” #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd #JusticeForGeorge #BlackLivesMatter pic.twitter.com/bW48imyt55— Tanya Kerssen (@tkerssen) May 31, 2020
Minneapolis police tweeted that officers were shot at late Saturday and arrested a suspect in the shooting. In another incident, officers responding to reports of an armed person were nearly rammed by the suspect, who was later arrested.
2:45 AM EDT - California's governor declared a state of emergency in Los Angeles county, making way for the deployment of National Guard troops.
2:29 AM EDT - VOA's Turkish service shot this video of protesters in Washington near the White House:
1:38 AM EDT - The Indianapolis Star reports that one person was killed in Indianapolis Saturday night. The city's police department tweeted that it was investigating multiple shootings in the city, but that its officers had not fired shots.
1:27 AM EDT - The governor of the state of Washington sent National Guard troops to Seattle shortly after a curfew imposed by the city's mayor failed to disperse protesters, the Seattle Times reports. Also in Seattle, a security guard for a local television crew disarmed two protesters who took weapons from a police vehicle that had been disabled during the protests.
1:15 AM EDT - VOA Noticias reporter Celia Mendoza filed this report on the ongoing protests in New York:
12:45 am EDT - Former Vice President and Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden tweeted a link to a statement on the ongoing unrest early Sunday. Biden said protesting brutality "is right and necessary. It’s an utterly American response. But burning down communities and needless destruction is not."
11:20 pm EDT - The Associated Press reports that nearly 1,400 people have been arrested in 17 U.S. cities since Thursday. More than a third of those arrests were made in Los Angeles on Friday, the AP said.
10:45 pm EDT - A police officer in Atlanta was injured after being struck by someone riding an all-terrain-vehicle. The officer "sustained significant injuries," according to the Atlanta Police Department. The rider sustained minor injuries and was arrested, the department said.
10:40 pm EDT - President Trump tweeted support for National Guard troops in Minnesota and police in New York late Saturday. In a tweet criticizing the mayor of Minneapolis, Trump said the Guard troops should have been activated sooner. A few minutes later, the president tweeted that "New York's Finest - a nickname for the New York Police Department - must be allowed to do their job.
The National Guard has been released in Minneapolis to do the job that the Democrat Mayor couldn’t do. Should have been used 2 days ago & there would not have been damage & Police Headquarters would not have been taken over & ruined. Great job by the National Guard. No games!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2020
Protests turned violent
For the past four nights, initially peaceful protesting has degenerated into looting, arson and other violence in Minneapolis and neighboring St. Paul, as well as other cities across the United States.
“We are under assault,” Minnesota Governor Tim Walz said as he promised “full strength” would be used to restore order.
Governors in at least 11 other states -- Georgia, Kentucky, Ohio, Wisconsin, Colorado, Utah, Washington, California, Tennessee, Missouri and Texas -- also activated National Guard troops to help quell protests that in many areas have turned violent.
Mayors across the U.S. have instituted nighttime curfews after violence occurred in their cities, including Los Angeles, California; Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; Atlanta, Georgia; Denver, Colorado; Columbia, South Carolina; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The demonstrators are protesting the death of George Floyd, who can be seen in a video lying on the ground with a white officer pressing his knee into his neck. Floyd, who is handcuffed with his hands behind his back on the video, can be heard pleading repeatedly, “I can’t breathe.”