ATLANTA — The mayor of Atlanta issued a city-wide curfew that started at 9 p.m. and will end at sunrise Sunday.
The “extreme move” followed a night of unrest across the city Friday after a planned peaceful protest over the death of George Floyd turned violent. Numerous businesses and police cars were damaged in the chaos and dozens of people were arrested.
Gov. Brian Kemp announced Saturday night he was expanding a state of emergency statewide ahead of planned protests on Sunday. Kemp will activate 3,000 National Guard troops to try to keep the peace.
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Police say that protesters are continuing to damage property, including a patrol vehicles, and have broken out windows of the APD’s Zone 5 precinct, the Dunkin Donuts and other downtown businesses.
“Officers continue to endure rocks and other items being thrown at them and we continue receiving reports of armed protesters in these groups,” police said. “As of 10:50 p.m., officers have made 51 arrests.”
Gov. Brian Kemp has expanded a state of emergency statewide through the end of next weekend, which will allow him to deploy more National Guard troops. The initial state of emergency only applied to Fulton County.
Kemp said he has signed an order activating up to 3,000 troops ahead of several planned protests on Sunday.
“These highly trained citizen soldiers will partner will law enforcement to preserve peace and protect Georgians in every corner of our great state,” Kemp wrote.
Hundreds of protesters gathered at an intersection in Gainesville Saturday night.
Breaking : protestors and Gainesville/ Hall county authorities face to face right now in downtown Gainesville . Peaceful so far , some yelling but no incidents . Jesse Jewell Parkway and Main Street blocked . @wsbtv pic.twitter.com/0gWknn1POm— Tony Thomas (@TonyThomasWSB) May 31, 2020
Sources tell Channel 2 Action News that an officer is down in downtown Atlanta. The officer was conscious and alert when he was taken to the hospital.
Atlanta Police said that the APD Motors Officer appeared to have been struck by an ATV on Ted Turner Drive. The officer sustained significant injuries and was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital. The rider suffered minor injures and was taken into custody.
An ambulance left downtown Atlanta moments ago after an officer was injured. We've learned the officer was alert and conscious on the way to the hospital: https://t.co/DZ4qzO4PW6 pic.twitter.com/iJNJgZOxdL— WSB-TV (@wsbtv) May 31, 2020
Gwinnett County police said Saturday night that 4 people were arrested after protests at Sugarloaf Mills Mall, but that the protest ended peacefully.
10:18 p.m. Police are urging everyone in Fulton County to go home.
Tonight, FCSO units are in East Point & Buckhead. Other teams are w/firefighters watching their backs. FCSO SWAT is deployed. FCSO Command is in the unified command center. #MutualAid Atlanta's 9 p.m. curfew is in effect. Please go home. Be safe everyone. pic.twitter.com/cSQdtONPMP— Fulton Sheriff PIO (@FultonSheriff) May 31, 2020
10:00 p.m. Atlanta police said that 34 people were arrested downtown outside Centennial Olympic Park after protesters broke windows of a building and threw rocks, bottles and fireworks at police.
At least one of the protesters was armed.
9:31 p.m. Several people have been taken into custody in downtown Atlanta since the curfew has gone into effect, but compared to last night, the crowds are much smaller.
Group that does not care about curfew is together at a parking lot near the Ferris wheel. Police nearby prepared to move in. pic.twitter.com/g2jIM0k9V8— Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) May 31, 2020
WATCH LIVE: Several people taken into custody after a curfew in City of Atlanta goes into effect, but crowd are much smaller than last night: https://t.co/c8cPBZLATJ pic.twitter.com/sOwOJ7AeNF— WSB-TV (@wsbtv) May 31, 2020
9:05 p.m. People who live in City of Atlanta got this alert on their phones tonight:
I live in the city of Atlanta. My phone just buzzed with this alert: pic.twitter.com/GImSBE8LDP— Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) May 31, 2020
9:00 p.m. Tear gas and smoke bombs appear to be going off downtown as the curfew goes into place.
Tear gas and smoke bombs going off downtown.@wsbtv pic.twitter.com/l3ccJOgYcP— Audrey Washington (@AudreyWSBTV) May 31, 2020
8:55 p.m. Police have given a warning about the 9 p.m. curfew:
The 9pm curfew warning has been given. pic.twitter.com/8jNXaw9qMC— Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) May 31, 2020
Someone threw a brick at a cop car, shattering the window, in front of the Governor’s mansion.
This was my live report right after someone threw a brick at a cop car & shattered the window. I thought it was bomb bc or the way it sounded. I was hoping the tear gas wasn’t next. Thankfully it wasn’t. We’re still out here, waiting to see if the 9pm curfew is enforced pic.twitter.com/Xy2UJPFdwf— Tyisha Fernandes (@TyishaWSB) May 31, 2020
8:17 p.m. We have multiple crews reporter from multiple angles downtown.
Large police presence at Centennial Olympic Park DR.@wsbtv pic.twitter.com/hQWvnCOmvA— Audrey Washington (@AudreyWSBTV) May 31, 2020
8:07 p.m. MARTA will suspend all service starting at 9 p.m. in accordance with the mayor’s order.
Due to Mayor Bottoms' executive order establishing a citywide curfew at 9 p.m., trains will be ending service early tonight until further notice. The last departures are as follows: Indian Crk 8:40 p.m., H.E. Holmes 8:41 p.m., Vine Cty 8:2... https://t.co/pD7wzbft2G— MARTA (@MARTASERVICE) May 30, 2020
8:00 p.m. We’ve seen several waves of clashes with police near Centennial Olympic Park downtown. Several people have been taken into custody.
HAPPENING NOW: We've seen several people being taken into custody near Centennial Olympic Park tonight. WATCH LIVE: https://t.co/c8cPBZLATJ pic.twitter.com/NQ6bNWXCvL— WSB-TV (@wsbtv) May 30, 2020
The Georgia National Guard has just arrived at the Georgia Governor’s Mansion, where protesters have gathered across the street. Officers have asked people to leave.
.@GeorgiaGuard troops are out at the Governor’s Mansion on West Paces Ferry Road, ready to keep the peace and ensure nonviolent protests. pic.twitter.com/AfDMTEDS6Z— Governor Brian P. Kemp (@GovKemp) May 30, 2020
Police are gathering on the Williams Street bridge.
Huge police presence on Williams Street, Downtown.@wsbtv pic.twitter.com/BlQALzOgoe— Audrey Washington (@AudreyWSBTV) May 30, 2020
Channel 2 Anchor Justin Wilfon talked to Atlanta civil rights icon John Lewis, who pleaded for people to be non-violent.
“If you’re going to go out and protest, do it in an orderly, peaceful and non-violent fashion," Lewis said.
I know your pain, your rage, your sense of despair and hopelessness. Justice has, indeed, been denied for far too long. Rioting, looting, and burning is not the way. Organize. Demonstrate. Sit-in. Stand-up. Vote. Be constructive, not destructive. https://t.co/YbB14dgzr9— John Lewis (@repjohnlewis) May 30, 2020
7:05 p.m.: Protesters clashed with police at the Governor’s mansion Saturday night, leading to people being taken into custody.
6:56 pm. People who step out into the street in City of Atlanta are getting arrested:
People who stepped on the sidewalk are getting arrested right now. pic.twitter.com/Yr8GEvY7c1— Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) May 30, 2020
6:41 p.m. Protesters are on the move for a second night in downtown Atlanta.
6:31 p.m.: National Guard vehicles are arriving outside of Centennial Olympic Park, where protesters were gathering for a second night.
Channel 2′s Matt Johnson is on the ground outside of the CNN center, where protesters destroyed police cars and smashed windows on Friday night.
National Guard just drove by. Up to 1500 National Guardsmen are to be deployed. Curfew starts at 9pm. pic.twitter.com/Vk9TZ73NZM— Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) May 30, 2020
6:21 p.m.: Mayor Bottoms is speaking about instituting the curfew. She says this is not infringe on everyone’s rights, but she will not let happen tonight what has happened across the country. “We will maintain order in the streets of Atlanta this evening.”
6:09 p.m.: Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has issued a curfew for the City of Atlanta starting at 9 p.m. Saturday after a night of violent protests rocked the city Friday. The curfew will last until sunrise.
Several businesses were looted and damaged after peaceful protests condemning George Floyd’s death turned violent Friday night.
Alpharetta businesses including the Avalon announced they were closing early Saturday to preempt planned protests that were circulating on social media.
Sugarloaf Mills in Gwinnett County also closed early after protesters descended on the mall.
5:30 p.m.: Police said Saturday that the are prepared to monitor vulnerable business districts including Atlantic Station, Camp Creek Marketplace, Greenbriar Mall, Lenox Square, Phipps Plaza, Ponce City Market, The Mall West End and others.
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- PHOTOS: Damage in downtown Atlanta from violent protests
5:00 p.m.: Gov. Brian Kemp has called in up to 1,500 National Guard troops to try to keep peace in the city Saturday night.
“I’m incredibly proud of our officers for showing professionalism and restraint, allowing protesters to voice their valid concerns,” said Chief Erika Shields. “We were patient. But we will not allow these protests to devolve into the destruction of property or placing the safety or our officers in jeopardy. We will make additional arrests and we are grateful to the assistance we are receiving from our partner agencies.”
At least 71 people were arrested Friday night as chaos broke out first downtown and then in other parts of the city. Twenty APD vehicles were damaged and multiple other fires were set. At least 3 APD officers were injured.
“Officers were subjected for hours to objects thrown at them including water bottles, bullets, eggs, rocks, fireworks and knives,” officials said. “One officer was fired upon early Saturday morning while driving through Buckhead, but was not injured.”
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