Minneapolis Rioting and Looting As Gov. Walz Deploys National Guard

Minneapolis has imposed a citywide curfew and brought in the National Guard after mass rioting and looting broke out over what police say was misinformation about the death of a murder suspect.

Mass protests occurred in the Minnesota city following untrue rumors that a Black man had been shot by police on Nicollet Mall at around 6 p.m. on Wednesday.

In an attempt to dismiss the claims, the Minneapolis Police Department quickly released graphic surveillance footage showing that the suspect had fatally shot himself as officers approached him.

"This evening, a murder suspect committed suicide as police approached them at 8th and Nicollet downtown. No officer weapons were fired," police said in a statement. "This is a tragedy for our community that is still hurting. Our condolences go to the families of the victims."

Despite the footage being released online, large crowds gathered on the streets angry at what they perceived to be another example of a Black male being killed by Minneapolis police.

The killing of George Floyd on the streets of Minneapolis in May when officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for several minutes sparked worldwide protests.

Videos posted online appear to show businesses being looted as rioting broke out in the city, with gunshots also reportedly heard.

Officials condemned the disorder, which erupted during a press conference reiterating the death of the murder suspect was not an officer-related incident.

"We're compounding more tragedy by the destruction and folks wanting to do harm to our communities in our downtown sector this evening," Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said.

"This is my city. We will not tolerate that."

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz declared a state of emergency in Minneapolis while also confirming that 150 National Guards will be brought in to help local law enforcement deal with the unrest.

"Minneapolis, it's time to heal. We must rebuild and recover. Dangerous, unlawful behavior will not be tolerated. The Minnesota National Guard and State Patrol are headed to Minneapolis to help restore order. I remain in close contact with the city and every state resource stands ready to help bring peace," said Walz.

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey thanked Walz for his support after confirming the National Guard will be brought in.

"The unrest must stop and healing must start. Destruction will not be tolerated," Frey said. "Healing our city will require peace and all of us working together."

A citywide curfew is in effect in Minneapolis until 6 a.m. Thursday. During the curfew, people cannot travel on any public street or gather in any public place unless exempt.

"This curfew is to mitigate against risks of further damage to life and property, to reduce disruption to essential public services, to assure continued government operations, to protect health and safety of the community, and to organize and direct an orderly restoration of peace," the City said in a statement.

"Law enforcement, fire, medical personnel, members of the media, and other personnel authorized by the City are exempt from the curfew. Those traveling directly to and from work, and that are seeking care, fleeing dangerous circumstances, or experiencing homelessness are exempt."

As well as the widespread disorder in the wake of Floyd's death, demonstrators also gathered in Minneapolis this week to protest Jacob Blake being left paralyzed after he was shot in the back several times by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The Minneapolis Police Department has been contacted for further comment.

Minneapolis
(File photo) Minneapolis Police Deputy Chief Art Knight speaks with people gathered near a crime scene on June 16, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Looting and rioting broke out in Minneapolis,following what police said was misinformation about the suicide of a Black suspect. Stephen Maturen/Getty