LYNCHBURG, Va. – What had been a peaceful protest turned violent in Lynchburg Sunday night.
Lynchburg Police told motorists to avoid the area of Fifth and Federal streets after those in attendance began pelting rocks through windows of businesses. Several Lynchburg Police officers were injured and two people were arrested amid the violence. Police were pelted with rocks as they responded. News reports say the protesters damaged property inside Adams Motor Company before police closed in on the area.
Following a night of violence in Richmond Saturday, Gov. Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency across Virginia on Sunday. The emergency declaration includes a curfew for the city of Richmond that will be in effect from 8 p.m. through 6 a.m. for the next three nights.
Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney requested the curfew. Stoney condemned the “violence and destruction” that left some Richmond protesters injured and many businesses along the protest route damaged. Workers were cleaning up broken glass and other debris Sunday morning.
About 200 attended a peaceful protest in Danville Sunday. The group gathered at the JTI Fountain at Main Street Plaza. Speakers called for love and unity in this time of crisis.
North Carolina’s capital city is cleaning up after Saturday night protests over the Floyd’s death led to what the city’s police chief described as “anarchy.”
Police fired rubber bullets, tear gas and pepper spray at protesters and journalists after an initially peaceful protest that drew more than 1,000 people broke down Saturday evening.
Republican House Speaker Tim Moore posted on his Facebook page a video of the chaotic scene from a downtown high-rise and criticized the governor for failing to call in the National Guard.
“I am witnessing utter lawlessness firsthand in downtown Raleigh,” Moore said.
Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat, said at a news conference Sunday that hundreds of Guardsmen were available Sunday night to cities that requested them, including Raleigh and Charlotte. He expressed sympathy with protesters and frustration that violence was undermining their message.