After the death of George Floyd on Monday, protests and unrest have rocked Minneapolis. Demonstrators vandalized property and targeted police cars. The police have used tear gas and fired rubber bullets into crowds.
Elsewhere in the United States, demonstrators have also come out in force. In Detroit, the police said a man had been killed after someone opened fire into a crowd. In New York, demonstrations left people injured, and in Atlanta, protesters vandalized a CNN sign.
Here’s a timeline of the protests across the nation so far.
George Floyd dies in police custody.
George Floyd, a 46-year-old African-American man in Minneapolis, died on Monday after being handcuffed and pinned to the ground by Derek Chauvin, a white police officer. Bystanders captured video of the officer behind a police car using his knee to pin down Mr. Floyd between his neck and head. Mr. Floyd repeatedly said, “I can’t breathe.”
The next day, the video was widely shared on social media and ultimately became a driving force for protests in Minneapolis.
Protests in Minneapolis begin, and the police use tear gas to break them up.
That night, hundreds of protesters flooded into the Minneapolis streets. Some demonstrators vandalized police vehicles with graffiti and targeted the precinct house where the four officers had been assigned, John Elder, a police spokesman, said.
Protests also occurred in the city in the subsequent days. Officers used tear gas and fired rubber bullets into crowds. Some businesses, including restaurants and an auto-parts store, were set on fire. Videos shared on social media captured people taking items out of stores that had been damaged.
Protests erupt in cities across the U.S., including Memphis and Los Angeles.
In Los Angeles, hundreds of protesters converged in the city’s downtown area to march around the Civic Center. A group of demonstrators broke off from the march and blocked the Route 101 freeway.
The National Guard is mobilized in Minnesota.
Gov. Tim Walz of Minnesota activated the National Guard on Thursday. The order came as the city asked for help after vandalism and fires broke out during demonstrations and as the Justice Department said a federal investigation into Mr. Floyd’s death was a top priority.
Mr. Walz later said that he had activated thousands of additional National Guard troops to send to Minneapolis but had declined the Army’s offer to deploy military police units.
“Let’s be very clear,” Mr. Walz said. “The situation in Minneapolis, is no longer, in any way, about the murder of George Floyd. It is about attacking civil society, instilling fear and disrupting our great cities.”
Minneapolis’s mayor calls for peace and order.
After two days of protests in Minneapolis, Mayor Jacob Frey on Twitter called for order and said there would be “an all-out effort to restore peace and security” in the city.
He pleaded with protesters to return to their homes. “We need to offer the radical love and compassion we all have in us,” he said. “We must restore peace so we can do this hard work together.”
President Trump’s ‘looting’ and ‘shooting’ message raises tensions.
President Trump delivered an ultimatum to Minneapolis protesters on Friday and suggested that the military could use armed force to suppress riots. On Twitter, Mr. Trump called the protesters “thugs” and said, “When the looting starts, the shooting starts.”
He also criticized the city’s Democratic mayor.
“I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City,” Mr. Trump said. “A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right.”
Protests in Atlanta and New York bring destruction.
In the nights that followed, more protests erupted across the country.
On Friday, hundreds of demonstrators poured into the streets near Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic Park, leaving behind smashed windows. Some climbed atop a large red CNN sign outside the media company’s headquarters and spray-painted messages on it.
That night, protesters also clashed with the police across Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan, leaving officers and demonstrators injured. Thousands marched in the demonstrations before splitting into smaller violent protests. Some people threw bottles and debris at officers, who responded with pepper spray and arrests.
In Washington, a crowd gathered outside the White House, prompting the Secret Service to temporarily lock down the building. In Detroit, a 19-year-old man was killed when someone opened fire into a crowd of demonstrators, the police said.
In Dallas, protesters and the police clashed during a demonstration blocks from City Hall. Officers responded with tear gas after protesters blocked the path of a police vehicle and banged on its hood.
And in Denver, according to a news broadcast, hundreds of protesters converged on Civic Center Park, waving signs and chanting as Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Gonna Come” played.
Mayor says peaceful protests have turned to ‘domestic terrorism.’
After four nights of chaos in Minneapolis, Mr. Frey called on people to stay home. “What started as largely peaceful protests for George Floyd have turned to outright looting and domestic terrorism in our region,” he said on Twitter.
He said people who broke the 8 p.m. curfew would be helping those who use crowds to prey on Minneapolis.
“We are now confronting white supremacists, members of organized crime, out-of-state instigators, and possibly even foreign actors to destroy and destabilize our city and our region,” he said.
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