The Latest: NYC mayor will review acts of protesters, police

The Latest on the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who pleaded for air as a white police officer pressed his knee on his neck (all times Eastern):

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NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says protesters and police officers will be held accountable for acts of violence at a demonstration in Brooklyn that left people bloodied and vehicles burned.

Police Commissioner Dermot Shea says more than 200 people were arrested and multiple officers were injured.

One demonstrator was charged with attempted murder for allegedly tossing a homemade firebomb at a vehicle occupied by several officers, who escaped without harm.

The protest, one of many around the country over the killing of George Floyd by a police officer in Minnesota, started peacefully in the late afternoon in Manhattan. Problems flared after several thousand people faced off with officers on the streets around a sports arena.

Speaking Saturday, de Blasio, a Democrat, expressed solidarity with demonstrators upset about police brutality, but says there will be a full review of what went wrong.

He says he was upset by videos of the confrontations “where protesters were handled very violently” by police and by reports that at least two elected officials were among the people sprayed with irritating chemicals by officers at the scene.

“That’s unacceptable, and we need to understand exactly why that happened,” the mayor said.

But he added some protesters had come “with an agenda of violence and incitement, and they meant to harm police officers, and they did harm police officers.”

Many people in the crowd threw bottles at police. A group set fire to a police van and battered several other police cruisers with clubs.

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CHICAGO — Police Superintendent David Brown says the peaceful protests that began Friday afternoon turned more confrontational as the night wore on, resulting in 108 arrests.

Protesters blocked traffic along major streets, threw bottles and other objects at police vehicles and shattered the windows of downtown businesses. About a dozen squad cars were damaged and some officers suffered minor injuries, including broken wrist.

He called the property damage “minimal” and joined some other police chiefs around the country in empathizing with the protesters. He criticized the actions of the police involved in the death of George Floyd.

He says, “We don’t want our officers treating anyone like that.”

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St. LOUIS — Protesters blocked a downtown St. Louis interstate for three hours on Friday, set a fire in the road and broke into trucks in a demonstration over the death of a black man in Minneapolis.

Protesters blocked I-44 for nearly three hours after taking to the streets Friday night, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.

A protester who died had climbed between two trailers of a Fed Ex truck and was killed when it drove away, according to reports. Police say they were investigating.

The crowd dispersed after a few gunshots were fired. Police did not report any arrests.

Tensions between police and minority residents have lingered in the St. Louis area since the 2014 death of Michael Brown in Ferguson.

In Kansas City, Missouri, police used pepper spray on people marching through its Westport bar-and-entertainment district Friday night, The Kansas City Star reports. Police say a window was broken and protesters appeared ready to use a police barricade to do more damage.

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Protesters in Charlotte responding to the death of a black man in Minneapolis looted stores, kicked and stomped on police cars and engaged in confrontations that led to multiple arrests.

News outlets report protests in the city Friday night began peacefully but turned violent as the night wore on. A grocery store and a cell phone store were looted, and protesters threw rocks at police, smashed a police bicycle, slashed the tires of a police car and stomped on other police vehicles.

Officers responded by deploying tear gas canisters. Police say they made several arrests but did not provide an exact number.

One of those arrested and charged with failure to disperse was City Council member Braxton Winston. He was released several hours later.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney told WBTV in Charlotte that protests began peacefully and police were prepared to accommodate that, “and then it turned on us.”

He added the police, “showed restraint, but they took care of business.”

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MINNEAPOLIS — The governor of Minnesota says he plans to fully mobilize the state’s National Guard and promised a massive show of force to help quell civil unrest following days of protests over the police killing of George Floyd.

Gov. Tim Walz says he also spoke with Defense Secretary Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley about getting federal assistance to help stop the violence.

Walz blamed much of the destruction in Minneapolis Friday night on well-organized, out-of-state instigators whose goal was to “destabilize civil society.”

Minnesota Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington vowed a stronger police presence and a change in tactics “because this is intolerable and we are coming to stop it.”

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Categories: National & International News