Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey has called on the National Guard to assist with the escalating situation in the city as protests continue to erupt following the death of George Floyd.
Protestors descended on the Minneapolis 3rd Police Precinct on Wednesday in the second day of demonstrations.
The Washington Post reports that the crowd shattered windows and vandalized cars at the precinct amid chaotic scenes of fires, collapsing buildings and looting.
One person was shot dead, and there were reports of a stabbing near the protests, according to NBC. The shooting victim was rushed to the hospital but died and police had a person in custody.
Dramatic drone footage captured from the unfolding scene today shows the extent of the fires caused by the riots:
— AC Peoples (@44thfloor) May 28, 2020
The AutoZone store in South Minneapolis, seen here engulfed in flames, collapsed in the early hours of this morning.
Local units are struggling to keep up with the scale of the damage, as neighbors rush to extinguish blazes, like this massive fire, which engulfed a building near Lake Street and 26th Avenue South:
WATCH: A massive fire near Lake Street and 26th Avenue South in Minneapolis engulfs a building, as neighbors frantically hose down nearby houses. #GeorgeFloyd 📷 : @MDVancleave pic.twitter.com/Cy882xpzVk
— Star Tribune (@StarTribune) May 28, 2020
Those in the area took to rooftops as local retailers MetroPCS and AutoZone burned:
Mpls is on Fire! pic.twitter.com/wUyPPjJliv
— EstherWarrior (@believe_coach) May 28, 2020
Metro PC burninghttps://t.co/QZHEyA2C6C
— BM (@Airbump2U) May 28, 2020
— Unicorn Riot (@UR_Ninja) May 28, 2020
— CrimeWatchMpls (@CrimeWatchMpls) May 28, 2020
Aerial Footage Posted on Facebook Shows the Extent of Damage Caused by the Ongoing Protests
Hundreds of protestors took to the streets at the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue, where 46-year-old Floyd was arrested by police, later dying while in custody.
The dramatic aerial scenes show the chaos as the protestors throw rocks at the police, who try to disperse the crowd with tear gas.
In the video, the group can be seen looting the local Target on the 2500 block of East Lake Street before the police drop tear gas. Flashbang grenades can be seen going off. Police stand on the roof of the precinct firing tear gas and rubber bullets into the crowd.
According to Libor Jany of the Star Tribune, police said the owner of a nearby pawn shop shot and killed a suspected looter during the riots. Jany said it was one of four shootings in the vicinity in the past 24 hours.
Police are investigating a homicide. They say the owner of a nearby pawn shop shot and killed a person suspected of looting his building.
— Libor Jany (@StribJany) May 28, 2020
Police also reported another shooting, – away from the protest area – in the 2600 block of Longfellow Avenue, where a man was reportedly shot twice in the buttocks. This is at least the fourth shooting in the past 24 hours, including the homicide.
— Libor Jany (@StribJany) May 28, 2020
Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar has denounced the police’s “shameful” response to the riots, saying rubber bullets and tear gas should never be shot at unarmed protestors and children.
Shooting rubber bullets and tear gas at unarmed protesters when there are children present should never be tolerated. Ever.
What is happening tonight in our city is shameful.
Police need to exercise restraint, and our community needs space to heal. https://t.co/vwAIV7t5WJ
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) May 27, 2020
Mayor Calls on the National Guard for Reinforcements as Minneapolis Burns
KSTP and The Star Tribune reported that Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said he has “been in touch with the governor’s office and has requested assistance from the state.”
Frey said he has been in touch with the governor's office and has requested assistance from the state. "We've spoken several times. We're receiving assistance in the form of state patrol. I have requested the National Guard as well."
— Liz Navratil (@LizNavratil) May 28, 2020
Frey implored residents to “stay safe and evacuate the area.”
Please, Minneapolis, we cannot let tragedy beget more tragedy.
The area along Lake has become unsafe. We are asking for your help in keeping the peace tonight. https://t.co/kRZuWGJY29
— Mayor Jacob Frey (@MayorFrey) May 28, 2020
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz echoed Frey’s sentiments on Wednesday evening, saying that the situation had become “extremely dangerous,” and urging people to leave the area.
The situation near Lake Street and Hiawatha in Minneapolis has evolved into an extremely dangerous situation. For everyone's safety, please leave the area and allow firefighters and paramedics to get to the scene.
— Governor Tim Walz (@GovTimWalz) May 28, 2020
On May 26, Frey spoke at a press conference, including in his remarks the comment “being black in America should not be a death sentence.”
— Mayor Jacob Frey (@MayorFrey) May 26, 2020
It Started With a Call-Out Over a Forgery
Police arrested Floyd on Monday after responding to a call about a counterfeit bill being used at the store Cup Foods at 3759 Chicago Avenue. When police arrived, they found Floyd, a man believed to fit the description of the person described in the initial call-out, sitting on the hood of his car.
Video from the moment he was restrained appeared online, and additional security camera footage was also released from a nearby restaurant of his first contact with the police.
In the video, the officers can be seen handcuffing and moving Floyd out of the vehicle. He sits on the pavement before being led away. Four officers have since been identified and fired.
New video sent to us shows the moment George Floyd was removed from his vehicle and handcuffed on 38th and Chicago.
Video courtesy of Christopher Belfrey pic.twitter.com/MiIIula4sA
— Alex Lehnert (@AlexLehnertFox9) May 26, 2020
The official police statement said Floyd suffered a medical incident. The Hennepin County Chief Medical Examiner’s Office said the cause and manner of Floyd’s death are currently being examined by law enforcement at the local, state and federal levels, including the Department of Justice and the FBI.
READ NEXT: Minneapolis Man Dies in Police Custody