Protests In LA Day 6: Floyd's Memory 'Deserves A Better Los Angeles... A Better World'
NOTE: This story is no longer being updated. Check "The Latest" in the morning for updates.
Protests continue for a sixth night around Southern California as people take to the streets to express their anger over the killing of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer — and over other unjust killings of African Americans and people of color by police.
Protestors are making a strong showing despite a confusing Los Angeles County curfew order that went into effect at 6 p.m. Monday and lasts until 6 a.m. Tuesday. Several cities in L.A. County — including Glendale, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills and Long Beach — instituted curfews that started earlier.
Tonight's events come in the wake of President Trump's first public response to a week of mostly peaceful protests, which in some cases devolved into looting, vandalism and notably aggressive behavior by police toward demonstrators, troublemakers and members of the press alike.
In his speech today, Trump said:
"I am mobilizing all available federal resources — civilian and military — to stop the rioting and looting to end the destruction and arson and to protect the rights of law-abiding Americans including your Second Amendment rights," referring to the right for civilians to bear arms.
Trump did not invoke the First Amendment or the right to peaceful protest — nor did he acknowledge the aggressive police tactics that have played out at protests in multiple cities, where peaceful protestors and journalists have been targeted, harmed or arrested by law enforcement.
A few hours later, Mayor Eric Garcetti urged Angelenos to adhere to the curfew and not to destroy property.
After Garcetti spoke, LAPD Chief Michael Moore characterized the protests as "criminal acts," without drawing a clear distinction between the protestors and troublemakers, the latter of which were far fewer in numbers, by virtually all accounts.
More than 700 people were arrested last night in L.A., Moore said, adding that 70 were burglarizing or looting businesses.
"We didn't have protests last night. We had criminal acts. We didn't have people mourning the death of this man, George Floyd. We had people capitalizing. His death is on their hands, as much as it is those officers."
Moore quickly walked back his statement, saying that he regretted the "characterization" of his remarks. But he said he will not apologize to those who are out committing violence and "destroying lives and livelihoods."
"[Floyd's] memory deserves a better Los Angeles, a better United States, and a better world. It is my hope, and every pure intention, to achieve just that," he said.
Floyd, who was black, died last week when a white Minneapolis police officer pinned him to the ground by his neck for nearly nine minutes while he begged for mercy and cried for his mother before becoming limp and unresponsive.
As the sun went down over the Pacific and most Angelenos hunkered down for the evening, many still took to the streets.
Helicopters have been circling over Westwood all afternoon. Approximately 1,000 people participated in a peaceful protest outside the Federal Building, located at Wilshire and Veteran, holding signs and chanting for justice. At around 4 p.m., some of them walked onto the 405 Freeway and blocked traffic for roughly 20 minutes, reports the Daily News. The protestors were ordered to disperse. It's not clear whether police officers arrested anyone at this protest.
Hundreds of people marched in Hollywood. KTLA reports that just afer 5 p.m., the crowd was moving eastward along Sunset Boulevard and a store in Gower Gulch was looted. At around 6 p.m., KTLA reports, the crowd came to a sudden stop at the intersection of Cahuenga Boulevard and Willoughby Avenue, where officers stood along two crosswalks: "Several dozen people, some carrying signs, kneeled and put their hands in the air as they faced one row of about a dozen officers there."
Some looting, including at a Walgreens, is reportedly taking place.
Residents and business owners in parts of East Hollywood/Thai Town have erected a barricade on their street and are reporting that they're hearing loud booms.
LAist has received unconfirmed reports that another group of protestors had gathered by Paramount Studios, near Melrose and Gower, and the two groups of protestors are either merging together or being herded together by LAPD officers. The convergence could potentially occur in the Fairfax District, which saw a large crowd of demonstrators as well as some violence this past weekend.
Just after 7 p.m., NBC4 reports, approximtely 50 protesters in the Hollywood area had been detained for apparent curfew violations.
There are a lot of of police officers im #Hollywood Hollywood #california— LIVE Protest Feed - Cam Grey 👽🛸🖤🌊 (@camerongrey) June 2, 2020
They will be arresting people for violating curfew. Felonies if you are found to be part of a group that was looting. #georgefloyd🖤 #TheGeorgeFloydProtestThread #LosAngelesProtest #curfew pic.twitter.com/iYv0IfdTgU
Protestors gathered on the Sunset Strip at Sunset Boulevard near La Cienega Boulevard. "Just a block to the east, in the shadow of the Directors Guild of America headquarters, around 60 uniformed police officers with riot gear were on standby. A block in the other direction, at the base of Laurel Canyon, two National Guard officers in fatigues surveyed the perimeter," Variety reports.
Demonstrators reportedly chanted, "Say his name! George Floyd!" as drivers honked in support.
Variety also reports that several blocks south, at the intersection of La Cienega and Santa Monica boulevards, the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department, which patrols West Hollywood, was blocking westbound traffic into the city.
HAPPENING NOW: a growing but peaceful #BlackLivesMatter protest on Sunset Blvd. just north of West Hollywood. Minor police presence. Drivers are honking their horns in solidarity. pic.twitter.com/B07ACYi7AA— Scott Stenholm (@ScottStenholm) June 1, 2020
At one point, an officer responded to chants and requets from the crowd to take a knee, and the crowd took a knee with him.
In downtown Los Angeles, National Guard vehicles rolled through the streets as peaceful demonstrators walked and chanted and were occasionally corralled by police. The protestors were mostly in the Historic Core, around 5th at Main and Spring streets. This evening, police began arresting protestors who wouldn't disperse and brought in buses from the Sheriff's Department to haul away the detainees
Around 3 p.m., the LAPD declared an unlawful assembly and began dispersing a crowd of several hundred protestors in Van Nuys, reports ABC7. "Most people were standing on the sidewalks, but some spilled over into the street and were walking between cars... As police began breaking up the crowd, there were scattered reports of looting nearby on Van Nuys Boulevard," according to ABC7.
Let it be known that the protest in Van Nuys in front of the courthouse today was peaceful as fuck. pic.twitter.com/6O3L9id390— LordSturg🦕 (@STURGGG) June 2, 2020
Hundreds of people gathered in La Palma Park and in front of Anaheim City Hall to protest the death of George Floyd. The Orange County Register reports, "The protests remained peaceful for several hours, though after an unlawful assembly was declared around 7 p.m., some people began throwing fireworks near police officers and one person said they believed they had been hit with a less-than-lethal round."
Got separated for a bit. Crowd is back at the park near La Palma Avenue and Harbor Boulevard. Sticking to sidewalks, really calm—except for some drivers doing donuts. pic.twitter.com/yXCCLDnBlm— Caitlin Hernandez (@caitlinherdez) June 2, 2020
A demonstration that last for approximately four hours was peaceful from beginning to end, reports the Pasadena Star-News.
The paper says "Demonstrators laid down on an overpass in West Covina before getting up to wave signs at the trucks and cars passing below on the 10 Freeway. Traffic below slowed as the demonstrators, about 170 by the mid-afternoon, shouted and hollered. Some drivers laid on their horns in support, getting celebratory cheers in return."
Reporting here in Glendora on Route 66 where over 60 people are protesting in the memory of George Floyd. Many honks and cheers from those passing by so far. pic.twitter.com/DZABbmAeOt— Javier Rojas (@TheeJavierRojas) June 1, 2020
After a major protest on Sunday afternoon near near 3rd and Pine streets, during which a Long Beach police officer shot LAist/KPCC reporter Adolfo Guzman Lopez with a rubber bullet — Long Beach has not seen any protests Monday. The Long Beach Press Telegram reports that, "Much of Sunday's demonstration was was peaceful — and had the backing of city leadership. But after dark, clashes with police erupted, businesses were damaged and stores looted."
As of now, there are no reports of protest activity in our city.#LBPD will remain in stage 3 tactical alert until further notice.— Long Beach PD (CA) (@LBPD) June 1, 2020
Please remember to abide by our city-wide curfew order which goes into effect at 4PM.
❗️Stay tuned for updates on city activity every couple hrs.
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