Chaos has continued to unfold in cities across America with more than 50 Secret Service agents injured in clashes with protesters in Washington DC, police charging into demonstrators in New York City and lootings continuing to unfold in major cities like California, Philadelphia and Boston.
Demonstrations from Washington DC to Los Angeles swelled from peaceful protests – sparked by the death of a black man, George Floyd, in Minneapolis police custody last Monday – into scenes of violence that drew National Guard troops in at least 15 states and Washington.
More than 4,100 people were arrested this weekend alone as the violence continued to escalate and cities enacted strict curfews.
The threat of heavy officer presence didn’t deter protesters from lighting fires just mere feet from the White House, crowds raiding high-end stores in New York and San Francisco or hurling rocks and Molotov cocktails at police in Philadelphia.
Police fired tear gas outside the White House late Sunday as fires were set in the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church and Lafayette Park in front of the White House.
In some cities, thieves smashed their way into stores and ran off with as much as they could carry, leaving shop owners, many of them just ramping up their business again after coronavirus pandemic lockdowns, to clean up their shattered storefronts.
Protests have unfolded in at least 145 cities across the country over the past week as people gather in outrage over the horrifying death of George Floyd, a black man who was killed while in the custody of a white police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota on Memorial Day.
The demonstrations have marked unparalleled civil unrest in the US that hasn’t been seen since the 1968 assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Donald Trump spent Sunday berating his enemies on Twitter and demanding ‘law and order’ in Democratic-run cities but did not appear in public and opted against making a televised address to calm tensions. It has since emerged that Trump was rushed by Secret Service agents to a White House bunker on Friday night as hundreds of protesters gathered outside.
WASHINGTON DC: Chaos continued to unfold in cities across America late Sunday night including Washington DC, just steps from the White House, where police and Secret Service deployed tear gas as they faced off with protesters during a demonstration over the death of George Floyd
WASHINGTON DC: Police stand guard outside the White House late Sunday as chaotic demonstrations took place in Washington, D.C.
WASHINGTON DC: Protesters jump on a street sign near a burning barricade near the White House late on Sunday. Fires were set in the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church and Lafayette Park in front of the White House
ATLANTA, GEORGIA: A protester is pinned down by a police officer as cops in riot gear including shields and helmets clash with protesters on Sunday night
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA: Smoke and debris at a looted hardware store in Philadelphia last night after it was targeted by looters during the George Floyd riots
SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA: An armed vigilante attempts to stop a bank robbery in Santa Monica during the widespread riots yesterday, as protesters turned on looters in some places
MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA: People flee for their lives as a tanker truck drives towards thousands of protesters on a highway yesterday. The truck did not appear to have struck anyone
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS: Protests continued to rage fury in Boston on Sunday evening where a police car was set ablaze
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA: A woman is bundled into a vehicle by police officers as protests in downtown Charlotte turned violent on Sunday night
NEW YORK CITY: A hooded man tries to smash a window in New York where protests continued following George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police a week ago
SAVANNAH, GEORGIA: Protester Kendrick Cutkelvin of Savannah uses a SWAT vehicle loudspeaker to disperse a small crowd of protesters after a peaceful protest in Georgia last night
In other developments:
- A man was shot in Louisville last night after a crowd gathered in the city, following other deaths in Detroit, Indianapolis and Omaha since the protests began;
- A giant tanker barreled into a crowd of thousands of George Floyd protesters marching on a highway near downtown Minneapolis, but did not appear to have struck anyone;
- It emerged that Donald Trump was taken to an underground bunker at the White House as protests raged on Friday, which was previously used by Dick Cheney on 9/11;
- Members of the president’s inner circle including Hope Hicks urged him to tone down his rhetoric following his inflammatory statement about ‘looting and shooting’;
- In New York City, mayor Bill de Blasio’s daughter Chiara de Blasio was arrested after police broke up an ‘unlawful assembly’ in Manhattan;
- Derek Chauvin – the fired Minneapolis cop facing a murder charge over Floyd’s death – was moved to one of the nation’s most secure prisons in Minnesota as he awaits his first court date.
At least 40 cities have imposed curfews – the most since the aftermath of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr in 1968 – in light of the riots and violence and National Guard members have been activated in 15 states and Washington, DC.
Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said on Monday that some of the protesters that terrorized the city overnight had come prepared with tools and supplies. She said they set fires to try and draw police away.
‘We recognize that people are frustrated and mad but tearing up our beautiful city is not the way to bring attention to what is a righteous cause,’ Bowser told NBC’s Today.
She said the city was ‘prepared for multiple days of demonstration’ and officials were working with intelligence to determine who was coming.
In Washington DC, fury erupted even as the hour of an 11pm curfew neared and as police fired tear gas and pepper spray amid blazes in the capital.
On Sunday alone more than 50 Secret Service officers were injured so far, a senior official said to Fox News, after rioters threw bottles and Molotov cocktails at them.
People were seen throwing branches and fireworks into the fires as police advanced forward in a line in a bid to push back the crowds to send people home.
Before the blaze at St John’s Episcopal Church broke out, church officials said they were thankful that the church wasn’t hit by protests the day before. The fire was set shortly after 11pm.
‘We are fortunate that the damage to the buildings is limited,’ Rev. Rob Fischer, the rector of the church, said earlier on Sunday. He said that that same morning church officials had secured its valuables.
A fire was also set in Lafayette Park, located just in front of the White House, where a protester set a US flag on fire sending smoke into the air as more than 1,000 gathered and raised their fists in solidarity.
The White House plunged into darkness last night as the executive mansion’s lights were turned off in an unusual move.
Donald Trump had returned to a White House under virtual siege after traveling to Florida for the Cape Canaveral space launch on Saturday, and did not appear in public on Sunday.
While Trump remained out of sight, his advisers discussed the prospect of an Oval Office address in an attempt to ease tensions. But the notion was quickly scrapped for lack of policy proposals and the president’s own seeming disinterest in delivering a message of unity.
Police and Secret Service pictured standing guard in front of the White House as protesters edge closer on Sunday
Demonstrators pictured flipping a car over and smashing its class windows during a protest near the White House on Sunday
A protester raises their first near a fire outside the White House as protests engulfed the country for another night
The historic St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington DC was set ablaze in protests on Sunday. Police form a line in front of the church late Sunday
Protesters set an American flag on fire at Lafayette Park in front of the White House as they rallied against police brutality on Sunday evening
Over 1,000 protesters gathered around a fire ignited near the White House on Sunday evening
At least five people have been killed in protest violence after gunfire rang out in Detroit and Indianapolis and in Omaha a 22-year-old black protester was killed in a struggle with a local business owner.
A man was shot dead by law enforcement officers in Louisville on Sunday on the fourth night of unrest in the city in a shooting believed to be linked to the protests.
At least one shot was fired by someone in a large crowd which had gathered in the city, WLKY reported.
Louisville’s protests have also focused on the March 13 death of Breonna Taylor, who was shot eight times by narcotics detectives who knocked down her front door.
Two Atlanta police officers were fired Sunday after video emerged showing them using excessive force during protests this weekend, including tasing and dragging two college students from a car.
Sporadic violence broke out in Boston following peaceful protests as activists threw bottles at police officers and lit a cruiser on fire.
On Sunday afternoon, a tanker truck drove into demonstrators on the I-35 highway in Minneapolis, which had been closed to traffic. The driver was pulled from the cab and beaten by protesters before police took him into custody. It did not appear any protesters were hit by the truck.
On the West Coast, there were also clashes in Portland, Oregon, where TV footage showed small fires burning as police fired tear gas at protesters who set off fireworks.
In Santa Monica, California, upscale stores were looted along the city’s popular Third Street Promenade before police moved in to make arrests. The vandalism followed a largely peaceful march.
Further south, in the Los Angeles suburb of Long Beach, a group of young men and women smashed windows of a shopping mall and looted stores before they were dispersed before a 6 p.m. curfew.
Washington state governor Jay Inslee has been among those to send for the National Guard after vandalism and looting in multiple cities, calling the riots ‘illegal and dangerous’ but adding they should not ‘detract from the anger so many feel at the deep injustice laid so ugly and bare by the death of George Floyd’.
Police armed with plastic shields, bulletproof vests, and weapons pictured at Lafayette Park as demonstrators gathered for the sixth night on Sunday evening
Demonstrators prepare to burn a US flag at a protest near the White House on another night of protests across the country
Police officers charge forward during a protest outside the White House on Sunday
After 11pm, curfew in Washington DC, the White House shut off its exterior lights and went dark on Sunday nights as protesters still rioted outside
A man raises his fist in front of the White House as smoke envelopes the capital’s front lawn on Sunday
On Sunday protests decrying the police killing of black Minneapolis man George Floyd continued. Using a fire extinguisher and their bodies, a group of protesters in New York stopped looters from entering a closed business
Peaceful protesters pictured making a chain with their arms to block looters from entering this closed Tory Burch store on Sunday evening amid growing civil unrest
Pictured left: A New York police officer embraces a protester after kneeling together with them in Queens yesterday; right: a protester raises their fist near a burning fire in Washington
Protesters pictured taking a knee and raising their hands in the middle of Canal Street amid a stand off with police over the death of George Floyd at a rally Sunday evening
New York City police officers block Canal Street as protesters demonstrate. Thousands of National Guard troops patrolled major US cities after five consecutive nights of protests over racism and police brutality that boiled over into arson and looting
A man in a Spiderman costume raises his fist in solidarity with protesters with the Freedom Tower shining in the back during protests in Brooklyn Sunday evening
Stronger together: Activists pictured arm in arm as they march to the Brooklyn Bridge on Sunday
People protest in Manhattan, New York, lighting fires and creating barricades on another night of nationwide protests
A man carrying a skateboard vaults over a burning barricade in New York on another day of angry protests over Floyd’s death
Horrifying video footage has emerged of New York Police Department officers clashing with protesters on Sunday night, chasing them and flinging them to the ground on the sixth night of demonstrations denouncing the police killing of black man George Floyd
Trump took shelter in White House bunker as protests raged outside
Secret Service agents rushed President Donald Trump to a White House bunker on Friday night as hundreds of protesters gathered outside the executive mansion, some of them throwing rocks and tugging at police barricades.
Trump spent nearly an hour in the bunker, which was designed for use in emergencies like terrorist attacks, according to a Republican close to the White House.
The abrupt decision by the agents underscored the rattled mood inside the White House, where the chants from protesters in Lafayette Park could be heard all weekend and Secret Service agents and law enforcement officers struggled to contain the crowds.
The demonstrations in Washington turned violent over the weekend and appeared to catch officers by surprise. They sparked one of the highest alerts on the White House complex since the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001.
In recent days security at the White House has been reinforced by the National Guard and additional personnel from the Secret Service and the U.S. Park Police.
On Sunday, the Justice Department deployed members of the U.S. Marshals Service and agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration to supplement National Guard troops outside the White House
The president and his family have been shaken by the size and venom of the crowds, according to the Republican. It was not immediately clear if first lady Melania Trump and the couple’s 14-year-old son, Barron, joined the president in the bunker. Secret Service protocol would have called for all those under the agency’s protection to be in the underground shelter.
Trump has told advisers he worries about his safety, while both privately and publicly praising the work of the Secret Service.
Trump traveled to Florida on Saturday to view the first manned space launch from the U.S. in nearly a decade. He returned to a White House under virtual siege, with protesters – some violent – gathered just a few hundred yards away through much of the night.
Demonstrators returned Sunday afternoon, facing off against police at Lafayette Park into the evening.
A White House official said Trump was expected in the coming days to draw distinctions between the legitimate anger of peaceful protesters and the unacceptable actions of violent agitators.
In Manhattan a line of cops armed with plastic shields and batons were seen storming into a crowd of protesters on Sunday evening amid growing agitation.
A circle of eight cops was seen gathering around one protester, flinging him to the ground and arresting him. Nearby also in Manhattan a car was sent up in flames Sunday evening, leaving demonstrators scrambling.
Mayor Bill de Blasio’s daughter Chiara de Blasio was arrested Saturday night alongside protesters in Greenwich Village for unlawful assembly and was later released, police said.
De Blasio had earlier rejected the idea of a curfew, like those adopted in other major U.S. cities.
The Democrat credited police for ‘tremendous restraint,’ but appointed two city officials to review incidents caught on video, including an officer ripping a man’s mask off to spray his face with a chemical and two police cruisers lurching into a crowd of demonstrators in Brooklyn.
‘We all better get back to the humanity here,’ de Blasio said. ‘The protesters are human beings. They need to be treated with tremendous respect. The police officers are human beings. They need to be treated with tremendous respect.’
On Sunday stores across all boroughs were ransacked, including a Chanel in Soho and a Coach store in Midtown.
Around a dozen people were seen forcing entry into the Chanel located on Spring and Wooster after 11pm. One man was spotted leaving with four bags, as per the New York Post.
Two men fleeing the store were arrested down the block by cops who arrived two minutes after the break in.
The protests continued in Soho in the early hours of Monday, where mobs of people rampaged down the sidewalks, smashing into numerous luxury shops to steal merchandise.
Hundreds of people marauded through the area, breaking into Rolex, Chanel and Prada boutiques as well as clothing and electronics stores.
One person was shot amid the chaos and was being treated in an ambulance.
Since the protests began days ago, at least 790 people have been arrested, 33 officers have been injured and 27 police vehicles have been damaged or destroyed, the NYPD said. There were no major injuries reported.
Elsewhere in New York, hundreds of people helped clean up Sunday after shop windows were shattered and vehicles torched in Rochester and Albany and Buffalo.
Democratic governor Andrew Cuomo said the National Guard is on standby and that hundreds of additional troopers were made available to upstate cities.
In Schenectady on Sunday, police marched with protesters, with some officers holding signs saying ‘Black lives matter. Period!’ Police Chief Eric Clifford and other officers knelt with protesters.
Later, the mayor declared a state of emergency with a 7pm curfew, citing likely civil unrest.
The New York Civil Liberties Union criticized curfews.
‘It isn’t the protesters who need curfews, it’s the police. There is no excusing the police terror we have seen this weekend against protesters,’ said NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman.
Looters in New York pictured leaving a broken into store in Manhattan after ransacking its merchandise Sunday
Looters pictured running out of a vandalized Coach store in Manhattan on Sunday
Designer destroyed: This New York Dolce and Gabbana store was completely raided and cleared of its shelves Sunday
Looters in New York pictured running away from a vandalized store on Sunday evening
A line of police officers holding batons and wearing helmets – some of them also wearing masks – confront protesters in New York in the latest round of protests last night
A protester runs on top of a line of cars in New York on Sunday evening as protests continued around the country
Protesters pictured breaking their into a Gucci store in Soho, Manhattan Sunday evening
In Minneapolis, Minnesota, the heart of protests in the country, law enforcement officials said they believe white supremacists have infiltrated demonstrations in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Department of Corrections Commissioner Paul Schnell said Sunday night.
‘They’re agitators,’ he said to CNN, saying there have been reports of Antifa members attending demonstrations. Antifa is short for anti-fascists and are people whose political beliefs lean to the far left and are not in line with the Democratic Party.
Such complaints are sweeping the nation as a divide emerges among peaceful protesters, rioters, and looters.
On Sunday evening a man later identified as Bogdan Vechirko drove a tanker truck into a crowd of protesters on the Minnesota I-35W bridge on Sunday night and was later charged with assault.
No protesters were hurt but his actions were described as ‘inciting a crowd of peaceful demonstrators’.
Another closely watched protest was outside the state capitol in Minneapolis’ twin city of St. Paul, where several thousand people gathered before marching down a highway.
‘We have black sons, black brothers, black friends, we don’t want them to die. We are tired of this happening, this generation is not having it, we are tired of oppression,’ said Muna Abdi, a 31-year-old black woman who joined the protest.
Minneapolis police later reported they had discovered caches of homemade firebombs around the two cities.
Boston police pictured armed with batons and protective gear as a police cruiser burns behind them Sunday night
A man tries to light a cigarette from the flames engulfing a Boston Police cruiser during clashes in Massachusetts last nihgt
Looters pictured ransacking a jewelry store during demonstrations on Boston on Sunday evening
Boston Police in riot gear stand in front of a burning police cruiser during demonstrations over the death of George Floyd
Cops pictured lined up protecting a Walgreens in Boston amid threats of riots and store raids
A protester pictured clashing with Boston and Massachusetts State Police on Sunday during demonstrations against the police killing of George Floyd
Protesters pictured assisting a man who was hit with pepper spray during clashes with police at Boston protests on Sunday
Philadelphia: Officials closed off much of the city after peaceful day protests turned into utter destruction by night fall on Sunday. People pictured running away from a GameStop during civil unrest
Chicago: The DuSable Bridge is raised in an effort to stop access to downtown Chicago after looting and destruction of property in the city center
The windows of a Chase Bank are seen shattered in downtown Chicago on Sunday
In Los Angeles the county sheriff said people were out on the streets ‘acting like terrorists’ following a day that saw peaceful protests alongside widespread looting and store raids.
‘The peaceful [protesters]… tend to remain peaceful but what’s embedded within them are people that are right now, they’re just acting like terrorists, trying to instill fear, damage property and loot,’ Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said to press Sunday.
‘There’s no lawful protesters left anymore. Everybody who’s here is just trying to do damage,’ he added.
Officials in LA – a city scarred by the 1992 riots over the police beating of Rodney King, an African-American man – imposed a curfew from 4pm Sunday until dawn, and the National Guard was called up for the first time since then.
In Long Beach, police chief Robert Luna called the violence ‘heartbreaking’ after admitting his force had been overwhelmed by the number of protesters.
‘We planned for a large group of protesters to express their anger in a positive way. We knew we were going to get agitators but we didn’t expect this number,’ he said.
Addressing the looters, he said: ‘We’re going to come after you and we’re going to put you in jail.’
In Philadelphia officials closed off much of the city after peaceful day protests turned into utter destruction by night fall.
Store windows saw their glass windows smashed near City Hall and their shelves raided with merchandise spilling out into the streets.
Philadelphia: A man is arrested by police with debris strewn across the street during protests on Sunday
Looters pictured leaving a hardware store with lamps and merchandise in their hands after the store was raided in Sunday protests
Police pictured arresting a man who was caught looting a hardware store during George Floyd protests on Sunday in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Utter destruction: Stores were left completely destroyed in the store raised with racks swept clean, unwanted clothes thrown on the ground, and shelves empty of merchandise
Barely anything left: Shelves at this hardware store were practically cleared out and unwanted boxes and goods left on the ground in disarray in Philadelphia on Sunday
In Chicago, vandals smashed windows at a shoe store in the heavily-Mexican Little Village neighborhood and crowds broke into a Family Dollar store at a South Side strip mall.
By midday Sunday, six people had been shot, one fatally, 240 people were arrested and about 20 police officers injured in connection with the demonstrations, Chicago police said.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who ordered an indefinite nightly 9pm curfew, said the Illinois National Guard had been requested to help keep order.
She said access to the central business district would be restricted to only essential workers and people who live there. Public transportation was temporarily suspended, major streets blocked with sanitation trucks and Chicago River drawbridges allowing traffic into downtown remained lifted.
‘Seeing the murder of George Floyd sickened me and it still does,’ Lightfoot said at a news conference, taking several breaks to compose herself.
‘But rather than respond to his death as we should and focus our energy toward doing the hard work to create the change that we need, we have instead been forced to turn our focus and energy toward preventing wanton violence and destruction’
Police Superintendent David Brown said officers were working 12-hour shifts to respond. When asked by reporters about what appeared to be a lack of police intervention as some businesses were destroyed, he said the public shouldn’t ‘switch the blame to the cops’ and commended officers’ professionalism.
George Floyd died on May 25 after he was arrested by four Minneapolis police officers for allegedly using a fake $20 bill. He was brought to the ground and white cop Derek Chauvin pressed his knee on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes, despite Floyd’s desperate repeated pleas for help saying, ‘I can’t breathe’.
The horrific assault was caught on video and sent shockwaves across the nation.
In total Chauvin had his knee on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds; two minutes and 53 seconds of which occurred after Floyd became unresponsive.
After civil unrest and protests, Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter and he along with the three other officers who arrested Floyd have been fired from the force following outrage over Floyd’s death.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s officers patrol Sunday in Santa Monica, California after peaceful protests turned into mass lootings
Protesters pictured being detained by officers during a rally against the death of George Floyd late Sunday
Police pictured wearing protective gear as they arrest protesters at a rally in Minneapolis on Sunday
A view of the damaged lobby of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations headquarters in Washington pictured Sunday following protests
A man smashes the window of a restaurant amid nationwide unrest following the death in Minneapolis police custody of George Floyd, in Washington state on Sunday
A man with a hammer attacks another man as a result of a disagreement about vandalism during demonstrations over the death of George Floyd in New York on Sunday
A line of police officers pictured at an intersection in Richmond, Virginia on Sunday evening
Police pictured facing off with protesters at a rally in Brooklyn, New York on Sunday
A woman protests in front of a line of Las Vegas Police officers on the Las Vegas Strip on Sunday
Protesters pictured ransacking a 7-Eleven store in New York late Sunday
Terrifying moment giant tanker speeds into a crowd of thousands of George Floyd protesters marching on a Minneapolis highway before vigilantes pull driver from the rig
A semi-truck barreled into a crowd of thousands of George Floyd protesters marching on a closed interstate near downtown Minneapolis on Sunday night.
Video showed the massive rig speeding down the I-35W bridge at about 6pm local time as protesters taking up all lanes of traffic fled out of its path.
Authorities said the truck did not appear to have struck anyone before it came to a stop in the middle of the road.
Protesters were seen climbing on the rig and pulling the driver, identified as 35-year-old Bogdan Vechirko, out of the cabin and beating him in the road.
Photos showed Vechirko with blood on his face and shirtless torso as protesters handed him over to police officers working to contain the situation.
The Minnesota Department of Public Safety (MDPS) said the driver was placed under arrest before being taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
He was then booked into Hennepin County jail on a probable assault charge. He was seen with bruises and cuts on his face in his mugshot.
Authorities said the driver’s motives were unclear but his actions appeared to be deliberate.
A semi-truck barreled into a line of George Floyd protesters marching on Interstate 35 in Minneapolis on Sunday night
Hundreds of protesters scattered as the truck sped directly at them while they marched across all 10 lanes of traffic
Dozens of protesters approached the semi-truck after it came to a stop in the roadway
The protesters were seen pulling the driver onto the roadway before police arrived to control the scene
Protesters are seen handing a man believed to be the driver over to police before he was placed under arrest
Interstate 35 was closed on Sunday as hundreds of peaceful protesters gathered to march south across all 10 lanes of traffic.
It’s unclear how the semi-truck, which appeared to be an oil tanker, managed to gain access to the roadway.
The truck was traveling northbound when it came upon the demonstration and maintained a high speed as protesters screamed and scattered.
A witness said the truck was blaring its horn and showed no sign of stopping as it neared the crowd.
‘You heard a horn,’ the unnamed witness told KARE 11. ‘It was barreling into that crowd and they were separating, just parting, thankfully.’
After the truck came to a stop, several protesters approached and pulled the male driver out of the front seat.
MDPS said the driver was injured but did not offer any specifics about the confrontation with protesters.
Minnesota Gov Tim Walz said of the incident: ‘Law enforcement responded immediately. Had to clear the bridge. Incident underscores the volatile situation we have, don’t know motives of the driver at this time. At this point in time to not have tragedy and many deaths is an amazing thing.’
Authorities identified Vechirko as the driver later in the night and released a pair of mugshots taken at the Hennepin County jail, where he is being held on a probable assault charge.
Vechirko lives in Otsego, Minnesota, and works as an independent contractor for Ken Advantage, a trucking company based in North Canton, Ohio, according to WCCO.
Ken Advantage issued a statement saying it will fully cooperate with the investigation into the interstate incident.
‘Our hearts go out to all those who are grieving the events of this past week,’ the company said.
Minneapolis cop Derek Chauvin is moved to one of the nation’s most secure prisons as he awaits his first court date in the death of George Floyd
By Ben Ashford for DailyMail.com
Derek Chauvin, 44, was arrested Friday on charges of third-degree murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd, which has sparked violent protests
Fired Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was moved to one of the most secure prisons in the US Sunday night, DailyMail.com can exclusively reveal.
In a highly unusual move, Chauvin, who is facing a murder charge in the death of George Floyd, was transferred late Sunday to Oak Park Heights Prison – Minnesota’s only Level Five maximum security facility.
The 407-inmate prison boasts of never having had an escape and is also regarded as one of the country’s safest, having only had one homicide in its history. Located on the border with Wisconsin, between the cities of Bayport and Stillwater, it accepts some of America’s most hated and high-risk inmates.
Chauvin was due to appear in court on Monday but with Minneapolis still gripped by unrest the appearance was pushed back until June 8.
According to recent data released by the Minnesota Department of Corrections, the Oak Park Heights Prison currently houses 297 murderers, 69 sexual predators and eight kidnappers.
Some 46 percent of the prison population is black.
The 16-acre, rural prison is carved into the side of a hill and has been featured on the National Geographic show America’s Hardest Prisons.
Cells are 7 by 10 feet with cement slab bed and toilets and sink made of steel so they can’t be broken off to use as weapons. The reinforced windows are said to be so secure that it would take 12,000 hacksaw blades to cut though the steel bars.
Chauvin had spent the weekend locked in solitary confinement in a heavily fortified Minnesota jail guarded by police marksmen and barbed wire barriers, DailyMail.com can reveal.
SWAT teams armed with rifles and binoculars kept lookout from the rooftop of the Ramsey County Adult Detention Center while a phalanx of Sheriff’s Deputies stood guard behind hastily erected steel fences.
Chauvin was held there Friday through Sunday because of the carnage unfolding outside jail facilities in Minneapolis.
Ramsey County deputies took no chances, sealing off the area with concrete bomb-proof barriers and mounting round the clock patrols in case protesters decided to target the jail in downtown Saint Paul.
But despite demonstrators running amok across large swathes of the Twin Cities, the expected onslaught never happened and authorities were able to quietly transfer Chauvin to downtown Minneapolis Sunday afternoon.
Oak Park Heights Prison is Minnesota’s only Level Five maximum security facility
The facility is located on the border with Wisconsin and accepts some of America’s most hated and high-risk inmates
TMZ reported that Chauvin has a camera focused on him all day and and cops check on his cell in person every 15 minutes.
Such checks said to be common in such a high-profile case.
It has not been revealed whether the 44-year-old ex-cop, charged with the third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter of unarmed Floyd by kneeling on his neck for nine agonizing minutes, will appear in person or via video link.
Hennepin County has two facilities for adult inmates within Minneapolis but authorities have not released specifics about where he is being housed, stating only that Chauvin is at a ‘public safety facility’.
The disgraced former lawman is yet to post the $50,000 bond needed to get out of jail after bail was set Friday at $500,000.
He has two properties, one in the leafy Oakdale suburb of Saint Paul, the other in Windermere, Florida, worth that amount combined.
However DailyMail.com understands the homes are jointly owned by his beauty pageant winner wife Kellie, 45, who would likely resist any attempt to use them as surety after vowing Friday to divorce her husband of ten years.
Kellie Chauvin released a statement on behalf of her and her family: ‘She is devastated by Mr. Floyd’s death and her utmost sympathy lies with his family, with his loved ones and with everyone who is grieving this tragedy,’ it read.
Bill de Blasio’s daughter Chiara, 25, is ARRESTED during George Floyd protest in Manhattan where ‘demonstrators clashed with cops and torched patrol cars’
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s daughter Chiara (pictured) was reportedly arrested at a George Floyd protest in Manhattan on Saturday night
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s daughter was reportedly arrested at a George Floyd protest in Manhattan on Saturday night.
Chiara de Blasio, 25, was taken into custody around 10.30pm after cops infiltrated an ‘unlawful assembly’ at 12th Street and Broadway in Lower Manhattan.
A police report obtained by DailyMail.com showed that she was among about 100 protesters who were arrested after they refused to move out of the roadway and were throwing objects at officers.
‘That was a real hotspot, police cars were getting burned there, people were throwing and yelling, fighting with cops,’ a source told the New York Post.
‘There were thousands of people in that area at that time.’
Chiara gave 181 East End Avenue – the mayor’s residence at Gracie Mansion – as her address, according to the report, but sources claimed she didn’t tell arresting officers who her father was.
She was reportedly released at about 8am Sunday after receiving a desk appearance ticket.
Chiara’s arrest came about an hour before de Blasio urged protesters to disperse.
‘We appreciate and respect all peaceful protests, but now it is time for people to go home,’ the mayor said at a 11.30pm press conference in downtown Brooklyn.
‘If you went out peacefully to make a point about the need for change, you have been heard and change is coming in the city. I have no doubt about that. It’s time to go home so we can all move forward.’
De Blasio didn’t mentioned Chiara’s arrest during either of the two press conferences he held on Sunday. The mayor is pictured with his wife Chirlane McCray, son Dante and daughter Chiara at the New York City Pride Parade in 2015
Police in riot gear walk down a street during protests in Brooklyn on Saturday night. Chiara’s arrest came about an hour before de Blasio urged protesters to disperse
A police report obtained by DailyMail.com (pictured) showed that Chiara was among about 100 protesters who were arrested after they refused to move out of the roadway and were throwing objects at officers
New York City police said that nearly 730 people have been arrested since protests erupted in the city late last week.
De Blasio did not mention that his daughter had been arrested during either of the two briefings he held about the protests on Saturday night and Sunday morning.
At the Sunday morning briefing, he said that officers had showed ‘tremendous restraint overall’ during the weekend’s demonstrations and appointed two city officials to review how the protests unfolded and how they were handled by police.He also promised an investigation into a video showing two police cruisers lurching into a crowd of demonstrators in a Brooklyn street, knocking people to the ground.
Hope Hicks ‘told President Trump his looters and shooters tweet could cost him votes’
President Trump has reportedly been urged by members of his inner circle, including top aide Hope Hicks and outside advisers like Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, to tone down his rhetoric as the nation’s cities are engulfed by rioting.
The president in recent days has been warned that comments he has posted on Twitter, including inflammatory statements such as ‘when the looting starts, the shooting starts,’ could turn off voters he needs to win re-election, Axios is reporting.
Trump is in danger of alienating key voting blocs like suburban women and independents who were key to his 2016 election victory, his advisers fear.
According to Axios, Hicks, who is counselor to the president and is considered one of his more trusted aides, raised concerns about the tweet Trump posted on Friday.
Hope Hicks (left), a top White House adviser, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (right), both expressed their concerns to the president, according to a report by news site Axios
As the violence intensified in Minneapolis, Trump stated in the Friday post: ‘I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis… These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen.
‘Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way.
‘Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you.’
He later added that ‘It was spoken as a fact, not as a statement.’
DailyMail.com has reached out to both the White House and Facebook seeking comment about the claims made in the Axios report.
Trump’s tweet was slapped with a disclaimer by Twitter, which flagged the president for violating the company’s rules about glorifying violence.
Trump initially posted this message to Twitter and Facebook just before 1am on Friday
Within hours, Twitter hid the post behind a warning which accused the tweet of ‘violating rules about glorifying violence’. Facebook, meanwhile, left the post up without any disclaimers
Earlier in the week Donald Trump was officially ‘fact-checked’ by Twitter over ‘misleading’ claiming mail-in ballots will lead to fraud
The president’s aides were also worried about the connotations of the language.
The phrase ‘when the looting starts, the shooting starts’ was made famous by Walter Headley, Miami’s chief of police who was known to be a racist and who used it when describing attempts to put down race riots in the late 1960s.
Trump told reporters that he was unaware of the racially charged history of the phrase.
In trying to clarify, the president later tweeted: ‘Looting leads to shooting, and that’s why a man was shot and killed in Minneapolis on Wednesday night – or look at what just happened in Louisville with 7 people shot.
‘I don’t want this to happen, and that’s what the expression put out last night means….
‘It was spoken as a fact, not as a statement.
‘It’s very simple, nobody should have any problem with this other than the haters, and those looking to cause trouble on social media.
Trump advisers are reportedly worried that the president’s tone could alienate independent voters. The image above shows protesters outside the White House late on Sunday night
‘Honor the memory of George Floyd!’
But Trump returned to his default, combative tone on Saturday morning, tweeting that protesters outside the White House would be ‘greeted with the most vicious dogs, and most ominous weapons’ if they breached the fence.
Others also expressed their worries to the president, including Zuckerberg.
On Friday morning, a company representative raised concerns with the White House about the president’s language and urged Trump aides to moderate his approach.
Later that same day, the president made a phone call to Zuckerberg during which the social network boss ‘expressed concerns about the tone and the rhetoric,’ a source familiar with the call told Axios.
The source added that Zuckerberg ‘didn’t make any specific requests’ to Trump.
Lincoln Memorial and other monuments on National Mall defaced with ‘Black Lives Matter’ graffiti while Confederate statues across the country are targeted during George Floyd protests
The iconic Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. and the National World War II Memorial are among the landmarks in the nation’s capital that were vandalized amid weekend protests and defaced with graffiti.
‘In the wake of last night’s demonstrations, there are numerous instances of vandalism to sites around the National Mall,’ the National Park Service for the National Mall said in a tweet on Sunday along with photos of monuments covered in graffiti.
‘For generations the Mall has been our nation’s premier civic gathering space for non-violent demonstrations, and we ask individuals to carry on that tradition. ‘
Spray paint that reads ‘Yall Not Tired Yet?’ is seen on the base of the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, the morning after protests over the death of George Floyd
Spray paint that reads ‘Do Black Vets Count?’ is seen World War II Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, Sunday. The memorial honors and remembers the one million black veterans who served
A group that held a march and then a rally at the Lincoln Memorial saw the words ‘Yall not tired yet?’ spray-painted.
The question ‘Do black Vets count?’ was also spray-painted across part of the National Mall World War II Memorial.
The memorial honors and remembers the one million black veterans who served.
A National Park Service worker was later seen using a power washer to remove the paint on Sunday morning.
Several people were charged with rioting in the city.
Graffiti that reads ‘No More Black Bodies’ was painted near the Washington Monument
The Robert E. Lee statue and Daughters of Confederacy building in Virginia were also defaced by George Floyd demonstrators as several Confederate monuments were targeted in protests across the country.
As tense protests swelled on Saturday into Sunday morning, monuments in Virginia, the Carolinas, Tennessee and Mississippi were defaced.
The presence of Confederate monuments across the South – and elsewhere in the United States – has been challenged for years, and some of the monuments targeted were already under consideration for removal.
In the former capital of Confederacy, protesters sought to condemn police brutality and the racism woven into America’s history by damaging confederate monuments in Richmond.
The Robert E. Lee statue in Richmond, Virginia, was defaced with graffiti on Saturday night as protests over the death of George Floyd continued
Several Confederate monuments across the US were damaged by protestors who’re fighting racism and police brutality
Protester Andie Baker, right, of Richmond, holds a US flag in front of the graffiti-covered statue of Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart after two previous nights of unrest
Demonstrators hold signs near the graffiti covered statue of Confederate General Stuart. Virginia Governor Ralph Northam issued a curfew for Sunday evening
The statute of Gen. Robert E. Lee, a Confederate officer in the Civil War who owned nearly 200 slaves, was covered in graffiti.
Messages like ‘Amerikkka,’ ‘Black Lives Matter,’ ‘No More White Supremacy’ and ‘F*** 12,’ which is a reference to law enforcement.
The Stonewall Jackson Memorial, Jefferson Davis Memorial and the J.E.B. Stuart statue were also targeted.
A statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis had ‘cops ran us over,’ spray-painted on the base. A noose had been flung over Davis´ shoulder.
A fire burned for a time at the headquarters of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, a group responsible for erecting many Confederate statues and fighting their removal.
The building, too, was covered in graffiti, The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. It was later extinguished by local firefighters.
Protestors on Saturday night set the United Daughters of the Confederacy headquarters on fire
Pictured: Several demonstrators protesting outside the United United Daughters of the Confederacy headquarters
Messages like ‘Abolition’,’One Love’ and ‘Police are Creepy’ were written on the headquarters building
In the coastal city of Norfolk, protesters climbed a Confederate monument and spray-painted graffiti on its base, according to photos posted by a Virginian-Pilot journalist.
Norfolk is among the Virginia cities that have signaled intent to remove their Confederate monuments. In February, state lawmakers approved legislation that would give cities autonomy to do so.
A commission in Richmond recommended removing one of five Confederate statues along the city’s famed Monument Avenue.
The debate around removing Confederate monuments came to a head in Virginia in 2017, when white supremacists and protestors clashed at the Unite the Right rally.
Pictured: Protesters toppled the statue of Edward Carmack outside the state Capitol after a peaceful demonstration turned violent
In 2017, the infamous Unite the Right rally took place in Virginia as debates about keeping Confederate monuments grew
In Mississippi, the words ‘spiritual genocide’ in black spray paint, along with red handprints, stained the sides of a Confederate monument on the University of Mississippi campus Saturday.
Photos shared by Skye Spiehler on Facebook appeared to show the one young man responsible for the defaced statue. One person was arrested at the scene.
Ole Miss administrators, student leaders and faculty leaders have recommended moving the statue – installed in 1906 and a rallying point in 1962 for people who rioted to oppose the university’s court-ordered integration – from a central spot to a Civil War cemetery that’s in a more secluded location on campus, but the state College Board has delayed action.
Critics have said its display near the university’s main administrative building sends a signal that Ole Miss glorifies the Confederacy and glosses over the South’s history of slavery.