Minnesota Gov. Tim WalzTim WalzJudge rejects Minnesota parents' attempt to force statewide school mask mandate Former Minnesota Senate Republican leader announces campaign for governor Minnesota parents sue Gov. Walz over lack of mask mandate in schools MORE (D) activated the National Guard in Minneapolis after police said misinformation about a homicide suspect’s suicide sparked protests Wednesday night.
Walz announced the deployment of the National Guard and a peacetime emergency in the city late Wednesday. At a press briefing early Thursday morning, he did not specify how many service members were being deployed, The Associated Press reported.
“We once again see the unrest on our streets. And not just Minnesota but as a nation, this pain continues on,” Walz said at the briefing.
“Minneapolis, it’s time to heal. We must rebuild and recover. Dangerous, unlawful behavior will not be tolerated,” he added in a statement released before the press conference.
The Minnesota State Patrol also sent out about 150 troopers and all available metro area state troopers to respond to the riots, the governor said.
The @MNNationalGuard has received a request to activate soldiers in response to civil unrest in Minneapolis tonight. Soldiers from our military police unit are currently reporting in and preparing to depart to assist local authorities at the direction of @GovTimWalz.— MN National Guard (@MNNationalGuard) August 27, 2020
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey (D) issued a citywide curfew to last until 6 a.m. on Thursday “to mitigate against risks of further damage to life and property” and allow essential and government operations to continue.
The incident that ignited the demonstrations involved the death of an unidentified Black man suspected in a homicide. Police said as they approached the man, he shot himself in front of a mall, and the Minneapolis Police Department released surveillance video that confirmed the police account, according to the Minnesota Star Tribune.
Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said rumors on social media led to demonstrations and looting in the downtown area of the city, according to the AP. Fireworks, thrown bottles and gunshots were reported
Minnesota Corrections Commissioner Paul Schnell said during the governor’s briefing that arrests were being made. But Minneapolis police spokesman John Elder said the number of arrests would not be available until Thursday morning, the AP reported.
Elder told the AP that one officer was hospitalized with a serious but not life-threatening injury.
Brit’s Pub in downtown Minneapolis is on fire. pic.twitter.com/WieEJ2qwz4— Mark Vancleave :movie_camera:+:newspaper:=:tada: (@MDVancleave) August 27, 2020
Minneapolis became the center of racial injustice demonstrations after the police killing of George Floyd, a Black man, on May 25. Floyd’s death inspired protests around the world, including in the city, where demonstrators burned a police precinct down.
Wednesday night’s protests also come as demonstrations have broken out in Kenosha, Wis., since the Sunday police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man, who was left at least temporarily paralyzed from the waist down.