PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Looting and fires plagued Center City as peaceful protests over George Floyd’s death turned violent in Philadelphia. The pop-up Starbucks in Dilworth Park outside of City Hall was set on fire on Saturday afternoon.
Multiple police vehicles were also set ablaze during the protests.
— manuelsmith (@manuelsmith) May 30, 2020
Massive looting took place in Center City, including at Nordstrom Rack, Boyds and Sephora.
Possible cop car on fire in the middle of 15th and Walnut Street. And massive looting happening on Chestnut Street. Nordstrom Rack, Boyds, Sephora all looted @CBSPhilly @PhillyPolice pic.twitter.com/DKu2XcKovf
— Howard Monroe (@HMonroeNews) May 30, 2020
People were jumping into store windows and stealing whatever they could get their hands on. There was also a car on fire in the middle of Chestnut Street.
The scenes of looting are now drowning out the message from earlier in the day.
“We really need to change the narrative and we really need to stop the cops from killing black men and black women and getting away with it,” protester Camille Murphy said.
“Enough is enough,” added protester Essence Fields. “This is it. I’m a mother, I’m a sister, I’m a daughter, I’m a wife and enough is enough.”
— Joe Holden (@JoeHoldenCBS3) May 30, 2020
Thirteen police officers have been injured, ranging from chemical burns to sprains. Over a dozen arrests have been made.
“I have never seen a group of people have more restraint, putting up with what they put up with — spit at, bottles thrown at them, urine thrown at them, caustic agents and balloons thrown in their eyes,” Mayor Jim Kenney said.
Kenney has implemented a mandatory citywide curfew, beginning at 8 p.m. tonight and lasting until 6 a.m. Sunday. The curfew will go back into effect Sunday from 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. Monday. During that time, people may leave their homes only to go to work at essential businesses or to seek medical attention or police assistance, Kenney said.
I signed an executive order implementing a curfew in Philadelphia for 8 p.m.–6 a.m. tonight and tomorrow night. During this time, people may leave their homes only to go to work at essential businesses or to seek medical attention or police assistance. https://t.co/pRvEtTW1da pic.twitter.com/zebPusHWCR
— Jim #StayHomePHL Kenney (@PhillyMayor) May 31, 2020
“The peaceful protests earlier were touching showings of our collective grief,” Kenney said. “The anger being displayed now cannot continue. Please have respect and dignity for each other and return home.”
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw mentioned they may have to extend the curfew for the rest of the weekend and possibly into next week.
The protests began at noon outside of City Hall. Hundreds of people knelt in silence in honor of Floyd. The move was symbolic. Floyd died after an altercation with a Minneapolis police officer who knelt on his neck.
“If God gives you life, who are you to take another person’s life?” protester Winnie Weh said.
Later in the day, nearly 3,000 people peacefully marched to and demonstrated at the Art Museum.
“There were people from all walks of life out there, young, old, even children. White, black, Asian. It was great,” Murphy said.
But despite how the message of the day was literally set ablaze, the peaceful protesters want you to know one thing.
“We have a problem on our hands. This is public health. Racism is systemic. It is killing us silently and violently,” Fields said.
CBS3’s Howard Monroe contributed to this report.