National Guard summoned to aid U.S. cities amid police clashes over death of George Floyd

It was another night of fire and rage in Minneapolis and other cities across the U.S.

Thousands of people protesting the police killing of George Floyd ignored a curfew leading Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz to admit he doesn’t have enough manpower to contain the chaos.

Walz said more than 700 soldiers were deployed Friday night, “an action that’s never been taken in the 164-year history of the Minnesota National Guard.” He added he would be talking further with the governors from adjacent states, which will providing “significant support through their National Guards.”

Overnight, Walz urged protesters, angry over the death of Floyd, to go home after they took to the streets of Minneapolis for a fourth day and defied an 8 p.m. curfew imposed by the city’s mayor.

“The situation in Minnesota is no longer in any way about the murder of George Floyd. It’s about attacking civil society, instilling fear and disrupting our great cities,” the governor said. Since the killing last Monday evening, protests have erupted in about 30 U.S. cities.

Graphic video footage taken by an onlooker’s cell phone and widely circulated on the internet showed 46-year-old Floyd — with police officer Derek Chauvin’s knee pressed into his neck — gasping for air and repeatedly groaning, “Please, I can’t breathe,” while a crowd of bystanders shouted at police to let him up.

WATCH | Protests continue after police officer charged in death of George Floyd:

The fired Minneapolis police officer that pinned George Floyd’s neck has been arrested and charged with third degree murder and manslaughter. Protesters continue to demonstrate in Minneapolis and across the U.S. 3:22

After several minutes, Floyd gradually grew unresponsive and ceased to move. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital a short time later.

Chauvin, who was dismissed from the police department with three fellow officers the day after the fatal encounter, was arrested on Friday on third-degree murder and manslaughter charges for his role in Floyd’s death.

WATCH | New angle of George Floyd arrest:

New video shot by a bystander shows two other Minneapolis police officers kneeling on George Floyd’s body along with their colleague who is now charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter in his death. 0:24

The video re-ignited an outpouring of rage that civil rights activists said has long simmered in Minneapolis and cities across the country over persistent racial bias in the U.S. criminal justice system.

Anger over the killing has spread from Minneapolis to cities that include Atlanta, New York City, Washington D.C., Los Angeles and Portland.

Report of officer killed

Demonstrators blocked highways in both Los Angeles and Oakland, Calif. About 1,000 protesters in Oakland smashed windows, sprayed buildings with “Kill Cops” graffiti and were met with chemical spray from police, who said several officers were injured by projectiles.

Two Federal Protective Services officers stationed at the Oakland downtown federal building suffered gunshot wounds amid the protests on Friday night and one has died, the police department said in a statement to CNN.

In Atlanta, protesters set a police car on fire, struck officers with bottles, vandalized the headquarters of CNN and broke into a restaurant in downtown Atlanta as a demonstration that started peacefully quickly changed tone Friday evening.

WATCH | NAACP leader says police accountability must be addressed:

Protests against the killing of George Floyd continued Friday night, even after charges were laid against one of the officers involved. Cornell Brooks, the former leader of the NAACP, says police accountability must be addressed by national and state lawmakers. 7:57

Georgia’s governor declared a state of emergency early Saturday to activate the state National Guard.

That force was also on standby in the nation’s capital, where a crowd of protesters confronted police outside the White House in Lafayette Square Park early Saturday.

People leave a vandalized Target store in Oakland, Calif., on Saturday. The incident occurred during protests against the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man in police custody in Minneapolis. (Noah Berger/The Associated Press)

Some protesters tried to pull metal barriers away from police officers.

A White House spokesperson said the building was placed under lockdown for a time as the demonstration grew outside.

WATCH | Protesters attack CNN Atlanta headquarters:

Protesters hurl rocks and smoke bombs at riot police on Friday night inside the CNN Center in Atlanta. Numerous demonstrations erupted in several U.S. cities on Friday after a fired Minneapolis police officer was charged with murder in the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man. 0:45

In Detroit, a 19-year-old man was killed late Friday when a person opened fire into a crowd of demonstrators. The shooter fled the scene in a vehicle.

As protests raged across the U.S., there have been images and reports emerging on social media showing physical confrontations between demonstrators and police.

This February 2019 photo provided by Henry Giron shows George Floyd at Conga Latin Bistro in Minneapolis, where he worked in security. (HenrySocialPhotos via AP)

In one video from New York, Dounya Zayer, 20, is shown being thrown to the ground by an officer as police advanced on crowds of protesters in the streets of Brooklyn. Speaking afterward from the hospital, Zayer said the violent takedown was unprovoked.

In Seattle, Wash., dozens of people gathered for a peaceful protest in the downtown area Friday night, but some black-clad anarchists broke a storefront window and set small fires around the city.

Police initially said they arrested Floyd because he matched the description of a man suspected of passing a counterfeit $ 20 bill at a grocery store and that he resisted arrest.

Police were trying to put Floyd in a squad car when he stiffened up and fell to the ground, saying he was claustrophobic, according to the criminal complaint detailing charges against Chauvin.

In addition to igniting the turmoil in Minneapolis, Floyd’s death has garnered national attention, and it drew comparisons to the case of Eric Garner, a black man who died in 2014 in New York after he was placed in a chokehold by police and also said he could not breathe.

The delay in Chauvin’s arrest may have helped to drive the protests. The other three officers involved have not been charged, but the investigation is continuing. All four were fired Tuesday shortly after the video began circulating.

Some activists and community leaders said they expected the protests to continue to push for the arrests of and charges for the three other officers.

Floyd’s death “just touched people in a way that they didn’t expect,” said Nekima Levy Armstrong, a civil rights lawyer and former president of the Minneapolis NAACP.

CNN reporter arrested on live TV

During the protests, the Minnesota State Patrol arrested a CNN journalist reporting live on television early Friday morning without giving any reason, leading him and others from his crew away in handcuffs.

Omar Jimenez had just shown a protester being arrested when about half a dozen police officers surrounded him.

“We can move back to where you like,” he told the officers wearing gas masks and face shields, before explaining that he and his crew were members of the press. “We’re getting out of your way.”

WATCH l Omar Jimenez arrested while doing live hit:

Omar Jimenez was handcuffed live, on air, as his crew tried to get closer to a police cordon. They were all later released. 1:46

CNN called it a clear violation of their First Amendment rights and called for the release of its three employees, which eventually occurred.

“What gave me one bit of comfort was that it happened on live TV,” Jimenez told viewers after he was released. “You don’t have to doubt my story. It’s not filtered in any way. You saw it with your own eyes.”

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