Governor Tim Walz has mobilized the Minnesota National Guard in response to widespread looting in Minneapolis, reportedly sparked by false allegations that the city’s police had shot and killed a black man earlier in the day.
Restaurants, shops, and other businesses were vandalized and robbed in Minneapolis hours after a murder suspect shot himself after being confronted by police. A rumor spread alleging that the man had been killed by law enforcement officers, leading to rioting in the city, according to reports.
Citing the chaos in downtown Minneapolis, Waltz declared a ‘peacetime emergency’ and said he was sending guardsmen, including a military police unit, to help “restore order” in the city.
Additionally, the Minnesota State Patrol deployed around 150 troopers to help local police disperse the rioters and prevent further looting. The National Guard and state police deployments came after Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey imposed a curfew and requested assistance from the governor.
Photographs and videos show widespread destruction and looting in the city’s downtown area on Wednesday night. Looters targeted Saks Fifth Avenue, a liquor store and a supermarket, among other businesses. Police deployed tear gas to disperse the rioters.
Looting is now taking place at the Nicollet Mall in Minneapolis after a man committed suicide while being pursued by police. Any excuse to riot. pic.twitter.com/gWrLpc8eoJ
More looting in downtown Minneapolis. They’ve now breached the Saks 5th Avenue store on 6th and Nicollet and people are making out with lots of goods. pic.twitter.com/tgUIyoIMvf
Police breaking up the saks looting. No arrests. Tear gas pic.twitter.com/ohHGXTHtoN
Rioters also set fire to a pub. The blaze was put out after firefighters rushed to the scene. There were other fires reported across the city, including at a Walgreens pharmacy.
Britts pub is on fire. @kare11pic.twitter.com/UVIx7sJqLb
The destruction was reminiscent of the riots that tore through the city following the death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police. The incident led to nationwide protests, with many descending into violence.
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