Protests turn violent across US after death of George Floyd in Minneapolis
Friday - 29/05/2020 07:08
As Minneapolis burns and police retreat, Donald Trump has vowed to send in the military and ‘start shooting’ if order isn’t restored.
As the dawn of a new day broke in Minneapolis, chaotic scenes erupted once again with riot officers descending on the epicentre of unrest and clashed with rioters once more.
They were accompanying firefighters to the Police Department’s 3rd Precinct building, which was overrun by a massive mob hours earlier and set alight.
It continues to smoulder, with fears that it could explode after protesters claimed to have cut the gas line to the building. A number of other neighbouring buildings, including fast food restaurants and small businesses, are also ablaze.
As police and fire trucks moved in shortly after 5am on Friday local time (8pm Friday AEST), a large number of remaining protesters clashed with officers, who deployed tear gas when projectiles were thrown at them.
At the same time, police sparked outrage when they arrested black CNN reporter Omar Jimenez in the middle of his live broadcast from the site. He clearly identified himself as a journalist but was handcuffed.
It was the third consecutive night of unrest in Minneapolis, in the US state of Minnesota, with dozens of businesse looted, multiple properties and vehicles torched, and thousands of people filling the streets.
The fury has been sparked by the death of an unarmed black man at the hands of a white policeman, with video of the brutal arrest going viral when it emerged on Tuesday.
George Floyd was pinned to the ground by a white police officer who was kneeling on his neck for almost 10 minutes. Three others restrained him and looked on.
Mr Floyd, 46 begged to be let go during the incident, telling the officer, “I can’t breathe”, before he lost consciousness. Terrified bystanders watched on, telling the officer he was bleeding from the nose and struggling.
He was then put on a stretcher and taken to the Hennepin County Medical Centre where was pronounced dead.
President Donald Trump added an extra layer of chaos to Thursday’s tense situation, warning that if local authorities can’t restore order, he would send in the country’s military to deal with the “thugs”, adding: “When the looting starts, the shooting starts.”
The highly inflammatory comments have now been flagged as inappropriate by Twitter for “glorifying violence”.