Looters descended on New York City’s luxury stores for a second night in a row on Monday as cities across the country continue to grapple with violence linked to protests over the death of George Floyd and police killings of black people.
A day of peaceful protests in the Big Apple gave way to reports of looting at Manhattan businesses when the sun went down on Monday, despite a heavy presence of NYPD officers aiming to prevent destruction sustained the night before.
Clashes between police and protesters broke out in many other cities including Minneapolis, Washington DC, Philadelphia and in the Chicago suburb of Cicero, where two people were fatally shot and at least 60 others were arrested.
In Buffalo, New York, shocking video showed police confronting a group of protesters in the street before a car rammed into officers. Officials said two people were killed in that incident.
Meanwhile, an active duty military police battalion is making its way to the nation’s Capitol to help patrol the streets.
Between 200 and 250 military personnel from a unit at Fort Bragg in North Carolina were reportedly expected to arrive in DC as early as Monday night, three Pentagon officials told CNN.
The deployment marks the first time that the Army has been sent in to patrol US streets in nearly 30 years since the 1992 Los Angeles riots sparked by the brutal police custody death of Rodney King.
The troops are expected to provide security in the capital but will not perform law enforcement duties such as arrest and detention of protesters or rioters, per CNN.
It came as President Donald Trump threatened to mobilize ‘thousands and thousands’ of soldiers in cities across the country to ‘end riots and lawlessness’ during remarks at the Rose Garden on Monday evening.
NEW YORK: As the sun set on the Big Apple, reports emerged of looting at luxury shops on 5th and Madison avenues that were ransacked the night before. Pictured: Looters smash a storefront in Manhattan
BUFFALO, NEW YORK: Shocking video showed police confronting a group of protesters in the street in Buffalo before a car rammed into officers. Officials said two people were killed in that incident
WASHINGTON DC: Protesters run from tear gas used by police to clear the street near the White House on Monday night
PHILADELPHIA: Protesters sit in a line in front of Pennsylvania National Guard soldiers wearing riot gear on Monday
MINNEAPOLIS: In Minneapolis, Floyd’s brother, Terrence, (center in a black hat) made an emotional plea for peace at the site where Floyd was pinned to pavement by a cop who put his knee on the handcuffed black man’s neck for several minutes
The US has been rocked by six straight nights of tumult since George Floyd, a black man, was killed in Minneapolis after a white police officer pinned him to the ground by kneeling on his neck last Monday.
Floyd, who was in handcuffs at the time, died after the white officer ignored bystander shouts to get off him and Floyd’s cries that he couldn’t breathe.
His death, captured on citizen video, has sparked days of protests in Minneapolis that quickly spread to cities across America.
Trump told reporters his administration is ‘fully committed’ to serving justice for George Floyd, but said he believed the looters and violent protests are distracting from that goal.
WASHINGTON DC: President Donald Trump spoke at in the Rose Garden on Monday evening and declared himself the ‘president of law and order’ as tear gas and flash bangs rang out in the distance
He declared himself the ‘president of law and order’ and threatened to invoke the Insurrection Act of 1807 to deploy the military.
While Trump spoke, police were heard firing tear gas and deploying flash bangs in an effort to disperse protesters chanting: ‘Don’t shoot’ in Lafayette Park outside the White House.
‘All Americans were rightly sickened and revolted by the brutal death of George Floyd,’ Trump said.
‘My administration is fully committed that for judge and his family, justice will be served. He will not have died in vain.
‘But we cannot allow the righteous cries of peaceful protesters to be drowned out by an angry mob. The biggest victims of the rioting is peace loving citizens in our poorest communities. And as their president, I will fight to keep them safe. I will fight to protect you.
‘I am your president of law and order and an ally of all peaceful protesters. But in recent days, our nation has been gripped by professional anarchists, violent mobs, arsonists, looters, criminals, rioters, Antifa and others.’
He then revealed his intention to invoke the Insurrection Act, saying: ‘I will deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem for them. I am also taking swift and decisive action to protect our great capitol, Washington, DC. What happened in this city last night was a total disgrace.’
‘Those who threaten innocent life and property will be arrested, detained and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I want the organizers of this terror to be on notice that you will face severe criminal penalties and lengthy sentences in jail.’
WASHINGTON DC: Protesters near in front of a line of US Secret Service uniformed division officers on Monday
WASHINGTON DC: The protesters held their ground as police launched tear gas to clear the roadway
WASHINGTON DC: A protester holds back a friend overcome with emotion during Monday’s rally outside the White House
WASHINGTON DC: Members of the District of Columbia National Guard are seen driving near the White House on Monday as an active duty military battalion makes its way to the Capitol to help control protests
PHILADELPHIA: Hundreds gathered on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia on Monday before police began launching tear gas and spraying chemicals at protesters to get them to disperse
While many of the demonstrations around the country have been peaceful protests by racially diverse crowds, others have descended into violence – despite curfews in many cities across the US and the deployment of thousands of National Guard members over the past week.
In Minneapolis on Monday, Floyd’s brother, Terrence, pleaded for peace at the site where the black man was pinned to the pavement by officer Derek Chauvin, saying violence is ‘not going to bring my brother back at all’.
‘Let’s switch it up ya’ll. Let’s switch it up. Do this peacefully, please,’ Terrence Floyd said.
The crowd chanted: ‘What’s his name? George Floyd!’ and ‘One down, three to go!’ in reference to the four officers involved in Floyd’s arrest.
In New York City, peaceful protests on Monday afternoon were followed by reports of looting after sundown.
Stores on 5th and Madison avenues were seen boarding up their with plywood to prevent vandals from breaking in while cops stood guard near shops with already shattered windows, including The Nintendo Store, Michael Kors, Kate Spade and Barnes & Noble.
Hours earlier New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced an 11pm to 5am curfew for New York City in a bid to curb the violence of the past few nights.
Philadelphia also announced a curfew beginning at 8.30pm Tuesday after Monday’s protests took a chaotic turn with police firing tear gas and spraying chemicals at demonstrators gathered on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
NEW YORK: NYPD officers watched on Monday as protesters gathered in Times Square to demonstrate against police killings of black people
NEW YORK: The protesters in New York City laid on the ground, many with their arms behind their backs, on Monday
NEW YORK: Hundreds more protesters watched on brandishing signs that read: ‘I can’t breathe’ during the Times Square protest
NEW YORK: Protesters rally against the death in Minneapolis police custody of George Floyd in Times Square on Monday
NEW YORK: A vandal smashes the window of a Michael Kors store to steal merchandise off a mannequin on Monday night
PHILADELPHIA: Hundreds of protesters march past City Hall in Philadelphia amid escalating clashes with local police
Chauvin has been charged with murder, but protesters are demanding that his colleagues be prosecuted too. All four were fired.
Monday’s Minneapolis gathering was part rally and part impromptu eulogy as Floyd urged people to stop the violence and use their power at the ballot box.
‘If I’m not over here messing up my community, then what are you all doing?’ he said.
‘You all are doing nothing. Because that’s not going to bring my brother back at all.’
States that have called in the National Guard
As of Monday morning, National Guard Soldiers and Airmen were activated in 23 states and the District of Columbia, ‘in response to civil disturbances’, the bureau said.
That brings the total number of Guard members on duty to nearly 62,000.
These are the states that, according to CNN, have already called on the National Guard in the wake of George Floyd’s death:
The District of Columbia
The country has been beset by angry demonstrations for the past week in some of the most widespread racial unrest in the US since the 1960s.
Spurred in part by Floyd’s death, protesters have taken to the streets to decry the killings of black people by police.
While police in some places tried to calm tensions by kneeling or marching in solidarity, officers elsewhere were accused of treating protesters with the same kind of heavy-handed tactics that contributed to the unrest in the first place.
Around the country, political leaders girded for the possibility of more of what unfolded over the weekend: protesters hurling rocks and Molotov cocktails at police in Philadelphia, setting a fire near the White House and smashing their way into Los Angeles stores, running off with as much as they could carry.
At least 4,400 people have been arrested for offenses such as stealing, blocking highways and breaking curfew.
President Trump has berated most of the nation’s governors as ‘weak’ for not cracking down harder on the lawlessness that has convulsed cities from coast to coast.
He told the nation’s governors in a video conference that they they ‘look like fools’ for not deploying even more National Guard members.
‘Most of you are weak,’ he said.
‘You’ve got to arrest people, you have to track people, you have to put them in jail for 10 years and you’ll never see this stuff again.’
Over the weekend the Pentagon reportedly took the rare step of ordering the Army to put several active-duty US military police units on the ready to deploy to Minneapolis.
Soldiers from Fort Bragg in North Carolina and Fort Drum in New York had been ordered to be ready to deploy within four hours if called, according to three people with direct knowledge of the orders.
Soldiers in Fort Carson, in Colorado, and Fort Riley in Kansas were also told to be ready within 24 hours.
The people did not want their names used because they were not authorized to discuss the preparations.
The get-ready orders were sent verbally on Friday, after Trump asked Defense Secretary Mark Esper for military options to help quell the unrest in Minneapolis after protests descended into looting and arson in some parts of the city.
Trump made the request on a phone call from the Oval Office on Thursday night that included Esper, National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien and several others.
The president asked Esper for rapid deployment options if the Minneapolis protests continued to spiral out of control, according to one of the people, senior Pentagon official who was on the call.
‘When the White House asks for options, someone opens the drawer and pulls them out so to speak,’ the official said.
The person said the military units would be deployed under the Insurrection Act, which was last used in 1992 during the riots in Los Angeles that followed the Rodney King trial.
Roughly 800 US soldiers would deploy to the city if called.
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz ordered 500 of his National Guard troops into Minneapolis, St Paul, and surrounding communities.
But a Pentagon spokesman said Walz did not ask for the Army to be deployed to his state.
‘The Department has been in touch with the Governor and there is no request for Title 10 forces to support the Minnesota National Guard or state law enforcement.’ Title 10 is the US law that governs the armed forces, and would authorize active duty military to operate within the US.
Active-duty forces are normally prohibited from acting as a domestic law enforcement agency. But the Insurrection Act offers an exception.
The Insurrection Act will allow the military to take up a policing authority it otherwise would not be allowed to do, enforcing state and federal laws, said Stephen Vladeck, a University of Texas School of Law professor who specializes in constitutional and national security law.
The statute ‘is deliberately vague’ when it comes to the instances in which the Insurrection Act could be used, he said.
The state’s governor could ask Trump to take action or Trump could act on his own authority if he’s determined that the local authorities are so overwhelmed that they can’t adequately enforce the law, Vladeck said.
‘It is a very, very broad grant of authority for the president,’ he added.
WASHINGTON DC: Crowds gathered in Washington DC on Monday down the street from the White House. Overnight, police and rioters clashed outside the White House
WASHINGTON DC: Protesters calling for freedom and carrying signs saying ‘I can’t breath’ gathered in Washington DC on Monday
WASHINGTON DC: Protesters hold anti-Trump placards while marching on H Street near Lafayette Square in Washington, DC on Monday
PHILADELPHIA: Protesters march in the aftermath of widespread unrest following the death of George Floyd on Monday in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Former President Barack Obama on Monday condemned the use of violence at nationwide protests over racial inequities and excessive police force while praising the actions of peaceful protesters seeking reform.
The vast majority of protesters have been peaceful, but a ‘small minority’ were putting people at risk and harming the very communities the protests are intended to help, Obama wrote in an online essay posted on Medium.
Obama said the violence was ‘compounding the destruction of neighborhoods that are often already short on services and investment and detracting from the larger cause.’
Obama’s latest remarks came three days after his first comments on the Floyd case, which called for justice but did not mention the violent nature of some protests.
His shift in tone on Monday came as some protesters have set fires, smashed windows and looted stores, forcing mayors in large cities to impose nighttime curfews.
INDIANAPOLIS: Protesters march in the streets of downtown Indianapolis on Monday
INDIANAPOLIS: A women addresses the crowd as protesters take a knee at the Indiana Statehouse in Indianapolis on Monday
LOS ANGELES: Protesters chant and raise their fists while on a street corner in the Van Nuys section of Los Angeles on Monday
LOS ANGELES: A motorist offers support to protesters on a street corner in the Van Nuys section of Los Angeles on Monday
Timeline: George Floyd’s death at the hands to Minneapolis police sparks nationwide protests
George Floyd (pictured) said ‘I can’t breathe’ when Officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for eight minutes
Monday, May 25
Cell phone video shows George Floyd, handcuffed and pinned to the ground, with one police officer – Derek Chauvin – kneeling on his neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds. Two minutes and 53 seconds of this was after Floyd was unresponsive.
Floyd, 46, is heard pleading: ‘I can’t breathe’, as he is arrested by four cops for allegedly using a counterfeit $20 bill at a convenience store. He later died.
Tuesday, May 26
Four Minneapolis officers involved in the incident, including Chauvin and Tou Thao, are fired. Minnesota Mayor Jacob Frey says it is ‘the right call’.
As calls mount for the cops to face murder charges, the FBI and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension launch an investigation.
That night, the first of several protests over Floyd’s death take place in Minneapolis, with protesters shouting: ‘I can’t breathe!’
These words echo Floyd’s plea to officers but the phrase also became a rallying cry in 2014 after the death of Eric Garner, another black man who was killed in police custody during an arrest for the illegal sale of cigarettes.
Wednesday, May 27
Protests continue into a second night in Minneapolis and spread nationwide to Los Angeles and Memphis, Tennessee.
As anger mounts, the protests become violent with one person in Minneapolis shot dead, stores are looted and buildings are set on fire.
Police in riot gear fired rubber bullets and tear gas at the thousands of protesters demanding justice for Floyd.
Mayor Frey called for the officer’s to be charged and said ‘I want to see justice for George Floyd.’
It is revealed Chauvin been subject to at least 12 conduct reports since 2001.
Thursday, May 28
A third night of protests with demonstrations in Minneapolis, Memphis, Louisville, Phoenix, New York City and Columbus, Ohio.
Protesters burn down the Third Precinct building while 500 National Guards are dispatched to the riots in Minneapolis.
At least 70 New Yorkers are arrested after clashing with the NYPD.
Protesters in Ohio breached the city’s courthouse and shots were fired at the Colorado State Capitol.
Friday, May 29
Trump warned on Twitter that ‘when the looting starts, the shooting starts’
President Trump blasts ‘radial left Mayor’ Frey and warned ‘thugs’ that ‘when the looting starts, the shooting starts’ on Twitter.
The phrase comes from former Miami Police Chief Walter Headley in 1967 when referring to ‘slum hoodlums’ who he believed took advantage of the Civil Rights Movement.
Derek Chauvin, 44, was arrested Friday on charges of third-degree murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd, which has sparked violent protests
Twitter flags Trump’s tweet for violating its rules about glorifying violence. It comes mere days after the president was fact-checked, sparking a row with the social media giant.
Black CNN Reporter Omar Jimenez is arrested on live TV while reporting on the riots in Minneapolis
Officer Chauvin is charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter over Floyd’s death.
Mayor Frey declares a nighttime curfew in Minneapolis that begins Friday at 8pm and extends until 6am Saturday
President Trump is reportedly rushed to the White House’s underground bunker and Secret Service and George Floyd protestors clash
Saturday, May 30
At least 25 cities impose emergency curfews as protests and demonstrations continue into the weekend.
11 states and the District of Columbia activate the National Guard as tensions flare.
The National Guard is deployed to Los Angeles amid protests – the first time in nearly 20 years since the 1992 Los Angeles Riots
The National Guard is activated at the White House as Secret Service agents struggle control demonstrators in Washington D.C.
Sunday, May 31
At least five people are killed during protests in Indianapolis, Chicago, Oakland, Detroit and Oakland as around 140 cities hold a sixth night of protests.
Federal Protective Services Officer Patrick Underwood is shot dead outside a federal courthouse during late night demonstrations.
The historic St. John’s church, built in 1816, is set ablaze near the White House in Washington D.C. as more than 50 Secret Service agents are injured.
At least 40 cities impose emergency curfews in light of riots, violence and looting.
President Trump urges states ‘get tough’ by calling the National Guard to oversee protests and demands ‘Law and Order!’
Trump announces on Twitter that he will designate Antifa, a loose but radical far-left group, as a terrorist organization after blaming them for protest violence.
The daughter of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Chiara de Blasio, 25, is arrested during a George Floyd protest in Manhattan.
More than 250 people are arrested in New York City as six NYPD officers are injured and looters target luxury stores in SoHo
George Floyd and Black Lives Matter protests have spread internationally, with demonstrations in London and Berlin.
Derek Chauvin is moved to one of the US’s most secure prisons ahead of his first court appearance on June 8.