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Protesters enter Minneapolis police station, set fires

Protesters gain access to a Minneapolis police precinct and set fires in the wake of George Floyd’s death in police custody.

5/29/2020 6:41:00 AM

Protesters gain access to a Minneapolis police precinct and set fires in the wake of George Floyd’s death in police custody.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Protesters angered by the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who died while in police custody, gained access to a Minneapolis police precinct on Thursday, the third...

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Protesters angered by the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who died while in police custody, gained access to a Minneapolis police precinct on Thursday, the third straight night of violent protests spreading beyond the city.

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Livestream video showed the protesters entering the building, where fire alarms blared and sprinklers ran as blazes were set. Police appeared to have left the building located in the neighborhood not far from where Floyd died Monday. A spokesman didn’t immediately respond to messages left by The Associated Press.

In footage recorded by a bystander, Floyd can be seen pleading that he can’t breathe asOfficer Derek Chauvin, who is white, kneels on his neck. As minutes pass, Floyd slowly stops talking and moving.Dozens of businesses across the Twin Cities were boarding up their windows and doors Thursday in an effort to prevent looting, with the Minneapolis-based Target announcing it was temporarily closing two dozen area stores. Minneapolis shut down nearly its entire light-rail system and all bus service through Sunday out of safety concerns.

In St. Paul, clouds of smoke hung in the air as police armed with batons and wearing gas masks and body armor kept a watchful eye on protesters along one of the city’s main commercial corridors, where firefighters also sprayed water onto a series of small fires. At one point, officers stood in line in front of a Target, trying to keep out looters, who were also smashing windows of other businesses.

Hundreds of demonstrators returned Thursday to the Minneapolis neighborhood at the center of the violence, where the nighttime scene veered between an angry protest and a street party. At one point, a band playing in a parking lot across from the police’s 3rd Precinct, the focus of the protests, broke into a punk version of Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song.” Nearby, demonstrators carried clothing mannequins from a looted Target and threw them onto a burning car. Later, a building fire erupted nearby.

But elsewhere in Minneapolis, thousands of peaceful demonstrators marched through the streets calling for justice.Earlier Thursday, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz called in the National Guard to try to stem the violence.Floyd’s death has deeply shaken Minneapolis and sparked protests in cities across the U.S. Local leaders have repeatedly urged demonstrators to avoid violence.

“Please stay home. Please do not come here to protest. Please keep the focus on George Floyd, on advancing our movement and on preventing this from ever happening again,” tweeted St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter, who is black.Erika Atson, 20, was among thousands of people who gathered outside government offices in downtown Minneapolis, where organizers had called a peaceful protest. Many protesters wore masks because of the coronavirus pandemic, but there were few attempts at social distancing.

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Atson, who is black, described seeing her 14- and 11-year-old brothers tackled by Minneapolis police years ago because officers mistakenly presumed the boys had guns. She said she had been at “every single protest” since Floyd’s death and worried about raising children who could be vulnerable in police encounters.

“We don’t want to be here fighting against anyone. We don’t want anyone to be hurt. We don’t want to cause any damages,” she said. “We just want the police officer to be held accountable.”Hennepin County Sheriff David Hutchinson said the rally had been peaceful and there had been no arrests by late evening.

The governor’s order did not say how many Guard members were mobilized or whether they would be in service Thursday night. After calling in the Guard, Walz urged widespread changes in the wake of Floyd’s death.“It is time to rebuild. Rebuild the city, rebuild our justice system and rebuild the relationship between law enforcement and those they’re charged to protect,” Walz said.

Much of the Minneapolis violence occurred in the Longfellow neighborhood, where protesters converged on the precinct station of the police who arrested Floyd. In a strip mall across the street from the 3rd Precinct station, the windows in nearly every business had been smashed, from the large Target department store at one end to the Planet Fitness gym at the other. Only the 24-hour laundromat appeared to have escaped unscathed.

“WHY US?” demanded a large expanse of red graffiti scrawled on the wall of the Target. A Wendy’s restaurant across the street was charred almost beyond recognition.Among the casualties of the overnight fires: a six-story building under construction that was to provide nearly 200 apartments of affordable housing.

“We’re burning our own neighborhood,” said a distraught Deona Brown, a 24-year-old woman standing with a friend outside the precinct station, where a small group of protesters were shouting at a dozen or so stone-faced police officers in riot gear. “This is where we live, where we shop, and they destroyed it.” No officers could be seen beyond the station.

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“What that cop did was wrong, but I’m scared now,” Brown said.Others in the crowd saw something different in the wreckage.Protesters destroyed property “because the system is broken,” said a young man who identified himself only by his nickname, Cash, and who said he had been in the streets during the violence. He dismissed the idea that the destruction would hurt residents of the largely black neighborhood.

“They’re making money off of us,” he said angrily of the owners of the destroyed stores. He laughed when asked if he had joined in the looting or violence. “I didn’t break anything.”The protests that began Wednesday night and extended into Thursday were more violent than Tuesday’s, which included skirmishes between offices and protesters but no widespread property damage.

Mayor Jacob Frey appealed for calm but the city’s response to the protests was quickly questioned as things started spiraling into violence. “If the strategy was to keep residents safe — it failed,” City Council Member Jeremiah Ellison, who is black, tweeted. “Prevent property damage — it failed.” On Thursday, he urged police to leave the scene of the overnight violence, saying their presence brings people into the streets.

But Eric Kowalczyk, a police captain in Baltimore during the Freddie Gray riots in 2015, generally supported the Minneapolis police strategy to avoid confrontations with protesters when possible, saying heavy-handed police responses are only met with more violence.

“Nobody wants to see their city on fire, but at the same time, you don’t want to see citizens injured by the very police department they are protesting,” he said. Read more: The Associated Press »

why instead of burning the city and the businesses there do these ppl just go get the cops that did it and have old fashioned old west justice burning the city and businesses is stupid what ppl gonna do when all the businesses leave and there is no work be the next Chicago? Not protestors ..... these are rioters who committed many crimes including assault, murder, arson, and theft.

Good time to drop a bomb and exterminate these roaches Good! 'Were taking no more Were booting down the door' Oi Polloi MariaSTsehai Trump must go! Good The murdering scumbags need to be brought to justice BUT, looting and burning does nothing to heal divides and starts to sink into the same cesspool as those who committed to horrific crime in the first place. Be better, take the high ground and protest peacefully but LOUDLY.

Hey report on this bullshit Rioters Give em hell ✊ Nothing says BLM like looting, pillaging, and burning down the city you live in. Way to show ‘em guys! When you are subject to being arbitrarily killed by police for your race, what do you have to lose? People criticizing these riotors for doing something illegal need some perspective: why the fuck should they care about a law that only serves to brutalize them? BlackLivesMatter

Ok. Arson bad. Focused outrage good. Find the middle ground please. Im sure the local taxpayers will be thrilled about paying for the refurbishments... Let It Burnnnnnnnnnn Dont worry the police are there to help. What more will it take to do the obviously right thing? Charge those men who killed an innocent black man in the street! Done. Not hard folks.

MAGA'S MURDER To anyone saying they should protest peacefully, Colin Kaepernick tried that and lost his career.... I'm saying setting buildings on fire is right, it's just that people seem to be paying more attention to violence than peace Fact check: “Criminals” destroy property and set fires. “Protesters” do not. Get your terminology straight.

I mean it’s Minnesota right? I can’t see the fires from my house! Let them burn it down! And what's going to happen when the police try to respond to a shooting, assault, rape, B&E, robbery, or a child abuse call? Looks like protesters are getting out of control. Violent protest accomplishes nothing but anarchy. Show your better than the police.

*rioters SaraDonchey Well, this is different. its getting out of hand NO JUSTICE. NO PEACE. No more press conferences & platitudes!!! DO LEADERS REALIZE THAT MINNEAPOLIS WILL BURN EVERY NIGHT UNTIL THERE ARE ARRESTS!! These, my friends, are NOT protestors. lucidDr89508700 Justice for FloydGeorge Floyd’s Police Video Emerges||Demanding justice for George Floyd||

I’m sorry while I totally agree that action against racism and police brutality should be taken looting your follow citizens business and burning down building is just not the way to gain any respect or supportt Lowlifes. The officers should be purged upon and we all count our losses Godspeed comrades. Burn it to the ground.

Rioters and looters Then let them police and care themselves. No police, fire or medical response. Smh Firing the participating police officers is step 1 Exercise of the judicial process with conviction of a degree of murder being the conclusion. The officers attending are all accessories to this répugnent crime.

If a thousand hooligans can group up without social distancing and destroy a city, we can all vote in person come November. Stop voting democrat in these cities. Trump2020 BlackLivesMatter!Floyd'sLIFE GONE! Guilty needsSWIFT PUNISHMENTByLAW!BUT DON'T LISTEN2NARRATIVES MEANT2DIVIDE US!BattlesWreWon!BLCK LIVS REALLY MATTR NOWat NEWJuncture:Rugged Individualism,IndepLdrshp,freshIdeas,thnkNoutsideThe box,Don'tFall inlineWithOldStereotyps ofWhatSuppos2B

Watching live on YouTube. Mesmerizing stuff! 'Protesters'... right. This is the most peaceful protesting method to express their feelings. Wait a many city’s police license plates actually read Police? Something’s off here. All plates I’ve ever seen on squad cars say MP followed by an alpha numeric sequence. What in the hell is going on here?

Maybe the cops did it Ignorance I’m extremely upset by the death of Floyd. But now that these protesters are literally destroying federal property, public property, and private property, they won’t be respected. Which means they won’t get the fair treatment they really do deserve. I think this will harm them.

These are not protesters. Let’s get real and call them what they really are—criminals. Protesters do not riot, loot and commit arson. 'Protesters' How come no ones going after George Soros for funding all of this anarchy? Gandhi would be disappointed All it take to fix this nation is accountability and consequence for those in power when they fuck up......

The Police are not judge and jury! Killed by the police: Whites 55% Blacks 23% Hispanic 17% Other 5% But I do wonder why the under reporting per other races killed! 'The Fires This Time.' WattsRiots RodneyKing TrayvonMartin GeorgeFloyd SandraBland FreddieGray ErinGarner ICantBreathe HandsUpDontShoot

Well dont call the police whatever you do . Just let them express themselves UNDERCOVER POLICE ARSONISTS sets Police precinct on fire. Those aren’t the peaceful protesters that are marching in Minneapolis tonight. These are rioters and likely ANTIFA. There are several gatherings this week with ANTIFA and they like to destroy things and watch things burn.

BURN MORE STATIONS IF JUSTICE ISN’T SERVED You misspelled rioters and arsonists. Fact check: meant “rioters,” not “protestors.” They must’ve confused this lawless bunch of rioters with the peaceful protesters trying to open their businesses by protesting in front of the Michigan capital. This will only get worse so long as people remain ignorant fools driven by media headlines.

Protesters ? Looters Arsonists Rioters Criminals That's right Was it them that set the fires tho? SatiarShah Burn it all And yet the White authorities rather than the City burns, but they Will never accept to put any White asassin in jail... JusticeForGeorgeFloyd NOW Turns out cops murdering poc sometimes has consequences.

Stop calling them protestors.. they are looters and rioters. Media is part of the problem 106th Burn. It. Down. PatMcMahonDC Ahem, Broke In And Burned It Down. Enough is enough. Protest all you want but you don’t need to destroy property. MatthewBoedy This powder keg of disgust for law enforcement has been building and building. With no true leader in the white house to calm the situation and have any sort of empthany for the black community. This is the result. Trump has given the green light for hate.

stevenamoney Great job (sarcasm) Makes more sense to start burning the rich racist neighborhoods Isn’t the Mayor of Minneapolis a Democrat? Isn’t he responsible for the police department in his city? Why do democrats create hostile police environments like Minneapolis where black men are targeted? Does it have to do with the democrats’ creating the KKK?

It's like these people can't control their emotional response. NeverRelax These people are no better than the officer. This is not how you create change and better for man kind. How do you call them protesters? I'd prefer it if there wasn't any violence. But if police are legally allowed to murder black people, then black people should at minimum be legally allowed to destroy the police's property. Let it burn. 👍

They aren't protesters. They're criminal rioters. Period. PERFECT SHOOT ON SITE! And if policemen die, Rep Omar is to blame for not trying to dial down the violence! We are an Egyptian family applying for asylum in Malaysia. We live in danger and are threatened by the Malaysian police at the instigation of Arab businessmen. I made a report and submitted it to the protection department at UNHCR, but nothing was done. Please helps us

Sorry, you mistyped 'criminals' Great! I love it ! We must stop this kind of atrocity on US soil! We must stop this kind of killing on US soil! We must stop this kind of murders on US soil! We must stop this domestic terrorism on US soil! We need Amendment 28, i.e. Freedom of Breath! Animals The saddest part of it all is that they are destroying their neighborhood, making it worse than it was before.

I wonder what caused them to react this way🤔 This wont solve a fing thing Weak local leadership, piss poor local results...its a universal truth. Best news I’ve heard all day Police must be too busy at the klan meeting tonight. Good let them burn all liberal cities to the ground! NO JUSTICE FOR OUR BLACK BROTHERS AND AND SISTERS NO PEACE FROM WHITE PEOPLE WHO GIVE A DAMN LET. IT. BURN. 🔥

AP more upset over destruction of a building...than murder of a human being. Straight from Dr. King’s Daughter: Would not have happened had MinneapolisPD arrested those four officers and the DA sought a grand jury. Absolutely normal human behavior of the OPPRESSED. What happened was horrible and I hope the book is thrown at those offices. However, this does no good. Quit lighting fires, quit attacking police cars, quit stealing and looting from stores. It makes it so much worse.

The 'demonstrations' continue. Let's solemnly hope that this is not the start of Twitlers Reichstag Fire. 😢 You mean murder. Animals Yeah I'm thinking the police let them do this. Protestors? These are people. The people that this country has neglected and abandoned in favor of billionaires and the donor class.

It's Precinct 13. I saw that movie. You mean his murder. I applaud burning the police department Embarrassing all around for my hometown This is no way to protest Good *rioters We don't need no water let the Motherfucker burn! Burn that building down...again and again..until there are criminal charges. Rioters*

FUCK MINNEAPOLIS POLICE! FUCK MINNEAPOLIS POLICE! FUCK MINNEAPOLIS POLICE! FUCK MINNEAPOLIS POLICE! FUCK MINNEAPOLIS POLICE! FUCK MINNEAPOLIS POLICE! Makes sense if the officers are out surrounding the alleged murders house, who would stop them from doing this?

There Were Fires And Looting In Minneapolis As Police Fired Tear Gas At George Floyd ProtestersOne man was shot dead outside a pawn shop, and police are investigating. Okay interesting way to spin a headline but go off This is so sad! Do they realize they are giving ammunition to the police. This is about a racist murder! How is this helping the cause. My God this mans family is devastated and you loot and shoot in this mans memory. How dare you! Shame on you!!

Violent protests rock Minneapolis for 2nd straight nightViolent protests over the death of George Floyd, a black man in police custody, rocked a Minneapolis neighborhood as crowds looted stores, set fires and left a path of damage. Police say the violence contrasted with a peaceful demonstration on Tuesday. GovTimWalz Needs to deploy the National Guard immediately before more people die. Armed citizens, as they showed last night, aren't afraid to shoot and kill looters. And small private militias have been seen around the city guarding stores. End this nonsense at once. The peaceful demonstration where police were teargassing protesters? Riots.

LeBron James shares Instagram image of George Floyd's death and Colin Kaepernick kneeling: 'Do you understand now?'Four Minneapolis Police officers were fired when Floyd died shortly after being arrested for suspected forgery. Every second of the day I worry about my son, brothers, nephews....and I even find myself saying a silent prayer whenever I see black man (young/old) walking down the street alone, praying he reaches his destination safely!! My 💔 hurts😢 Yea...... we understand people are cherry picking incidents to push an anti law agenda. JusticeForGeorgeFloyd ICantBreath BlackLivesMatter

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez weighs in on George Floyd's death, criticizes 'impunity of police violence'Four Minneapolis police officers have been fired following the death of a man in their custody. If black Americans are waiting for white Americans to come to their aid and stop their systematic abuse, they will wait forever. Only black Americans will fix this. Get organized. AOC Make no mistake, this is not something just African Americans are subjected to. Police violence in America is directed at every visible racial minority in America. The white supremacist infiltration of police departments across America – Who STILL thinks that's a 'conspiracy theory'?

2nd night of violent protests over Minneapolis man's deathViolent protests over the death of a black man in police custody break out in Minneapolis for a second straight night, with protesters in a standoff with officers, who fired rubber bullets and tear gas, outside a police precinct and looting of stores. Burning down low income housing under construction in your community to own the police ruining your community. GeorgeFloyd shots fired and reports of a body

Violence again rocks Minneapolis after man's death; 1 killedProtests rock Minneapolis for the second straight night after a black man's death in police custody. One person is killed in what police are investigating as a homicide amidst violence that included looting and setting fires. Nothing says 'protest' like mass looting of consumer goods There are actually two things going on. Protesting and Looting. The looters are shitting on the memory of the man, the protestors are justifiably protesting the murder of a man by police. The only homicide I know of tonight is a pawn shop owner defending his property. Who is better for blacks ?