Tue, 14 Jul 2020

Protests Around the Country Following MinneapolisDeath

Voice of America
30 May 2020, 16:05 GMT+10

The killing of George Floyd, a Minneapolis black man who died after being pinned by the neck by a white police officer's knee, has triggered a wave of protests across the country, with many demonstrations held Friday.

Protesters were planning marches and rallies to demand that police be held accountable for Floyd's death, an incident seen on a bystander's video. The Floyd case also focused attention on local incidents linked to racism and policing.

Below is a partial list of cities where protests occurred:

Minneapolis

After three nights in which peaceful rallies gave way to arson, looting and vandalism, authorities were on the alert for further unrest on Friday in the country's epicenter of rage over Floyd's death, even after the officer who pinned him by the neck was arrested and charged with murder.

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz deployed the state's National Guard in an effort to halt any further destruction after arson and looting the previous night.

Atlanta

About 1,000 protesters marched from downtown's Centennial Olympic Park to the state capitol, blocking traffic and an interstate highway along the way. The demonstration was intended not only to call attention to the death of Floyd but also to the February killing of Ahmaud Arbery, 25, a black jogger whose shooting in Brunswick, Georgia, was captured on video. Three white men were charged in his death earlier this month.

"I just want people to understand our anger," protest organizer Zoe Bambara said in a statement. "We have a right to be angry."

Columbus, Ohio

Protesters angered by the death of Floyd turned out for a demonstration in Columbus that began peacefully but turned violent early Friday, with windows smashed at the Ohio Statehouse and on storefronts along surrounding downtown streets. Republican Governor Mike DeWine issued a call to unity against racism and police violence and urged protesters to remain peaceful.

Denver

On Friday afternoon, hundreds of people gathered for a second day of protests as police looked on.

On Thursday night, Denver police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse crowds where some were vandalizing parked cars at the state capitol and blocking traffic. There were 13 arrests related to the protests.

Detroit

A "March Against Police Brutality" was held late Friday afternoon outside the Detroit Public Safety Headquarters. Many chanted, "No justice, no peace." Some of the signs being carried read, "End police brutality," and "I won't stop yelling until everyone can breathe."

Houston

Hundreds gathered in a protest organized by the group Black Lives Matter at Houston's City Hall, and the crowd spilled onto Interstate Highway 45's entrance ramp near downtown Friday. The crowd chanted, "I can't breathe," and "No justice, no peace," local media reported.

Las Vegas

More than 400 people gathered outside the Bellagio casino, holding signs and chanting, "No justice, no peace," and "Black lives matter," before walking north up the Las Vegas Strip, in front of casinos still shuttered by the coronavirus pandemic.

Louisville

Following a night of violence in the Kentucky city, police were bracing for more street protests on Friday over the killing of Floyd and several others, including Breonna Taylor, who was fatally shot by police in her Louisville home in March.

During a night of protests on Thursday, at least seven people were shot, one critically.

New York

Several groups gathered on Friday afternoon for a "We can't breathe" vigil and rally in lower Manhattan pressing for legislation outlawing the police "chokehold," used by a city police officer in the 2014 death of Eric Garner, who was also black.

Both Garner and Floyd were heard to gasp, "I can't breathe," before they lost consciousness.

Organizers also are calling for charges to be brought against a white woman who became an infamous social media personality overnight after she called police on a black man in Central Park who asked her to keep her dog on a leash.

San Jose, California

In a largely peaceful demonstration, hundreds of people marched through the capital of Silicon Valley and temporarily shut down a five-lane section of U.S. Highway 101 in San Jose on Friday to protest Floyd's death.

Washington, DC

Protesters marched Friday to near the White House, congregating at Lafayette Park. The White House was put on lockdown for a short while, according to reporters.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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