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May 31 coverage of nationwide unrest and ongoing protests

George Floyd's death has sparked protests across the country.
Protesters form a human chain near the 5th Police Precinct during a demonstration in Minneapolis on May 30, 2020.Chandan Khanna / AFP - Getty Images

This live coverage has now ended. Continue reading June 1 coverage of George Floyd's death and the nationwide protests.

Protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd in Minnesota last week continued to intensify across the U.S. Sunday, as protesters broke local curfews to voice frustration over policing in America.

In Minneapolis, a semi-truck was seen barreling toward a massive group of demonstrators on an interstate, though no protesters appear to have been injured in the incident.

Some elected leaders have blamed the violence that has broken out at some protests on organized extremists, though so far they have offered little evidence to support their claims.

President Donald Trump said Sunday that he would designate the radical lefitst group antifa a terrorist organization after earlier attributing the violence to “thugs” who he said were “dishonoring the memory of George Floyd." The comment drew criticism from Keisha Lance Bottoms, the Democratic mayor of Atlanta, and Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C, the Senate’s lone black Republican.

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This live coverage has now ended. Continue reading June 1 coverage of George Floyd's death and the nationwide protests.

'A devastating day' in Santa Monica amid looting and fires

Firefighters in Santa Monica, California, extinguished flaming cars, buildings and a dumpster on Sunday as people looted stores and protesters took to the streets.

Interim city manager Lane Dilg called Sunday “a devastating day for our city.”

Santa Monica Fire Department Chief Judah Mitchell said nine fires had been set throughout the day, with most of them in the city’s downtown area. NBC Los Angeles reported that dozens of stores were looted. Helicopter footage showed flaming vehicles, people running from stores with the merchandise in their hands and men in what appeared to be military-style gear with raised rifles in the streets.

Police Chief Cynthia Renaud said she wasn’t sure if National Guard troops had already arrived. She didn’t how many people had been taken into custody but said arrests were “ongoing.”

Nancy Silverton restaurant among businesses looted in Los Angeles

Among the businesses looted on and around Los Angeles' Melrose Avenue in a night of violence Saturday was one of acclaimed chef Nancy Silverton's restaurants.

Pizzeria Mozza's interior was set on fire after looters broke in and stole bottles of wine. Silverton said she watched her restaurant be trashed and looted on television.

"It was so surreal. I don't know how else to describe it," Silverton said in an interview with MSNBC. After smashing in the window, the looters poured lighter fluid on the floor and set it on fire, she said.

The looting and vandalism in Los Angeles occurred amid protests following the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in Minneapolis on May 25 after a white police officer kneeled on his neck as Floyd said he could not breathe.

Silverton is a renowned chef and author who has been honored by the James Beard Foundation. She also founded La Brea Bakery, and institution that is beloved in Los Angeles.

NYC Mayor de Blasio's daughter arrested during Saturday night protests

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's daughter, Chiara de Blasio, was arrested Saturday night during the citywide protests over the death of George Floyd, a senior NYPD law enforcement official told NBC News.

Chiara de Blasio was arrested Saturday night at East 12th Street and Broadway, in Manhattan for “unlawful assembly”.

The official said de Blasio was taken into custody at 10:30 p.m. She has been released.

The news was first reported by the New York Post. 

Read the full story here.



Fires burning in NYC

There are multiple fires burning in Manhattan at this moment in the Union Square area and one in Midtown, city officials said.

At Union Square, in lower Manhattan a vehicle has been torched and there’s a large crowd. At W. 41st Street and Sixth Avenue, there are reports of multiple arrests and a fire that started there.

Protests could accelerate spread of coronavirus, experts say

Within the last few days, careful social distancing has been overturned by demonstrations against social injustice — as thousands of Americans congregate in cities across the country protesting the death of George Floyd.

The large gatherings, infectious disease experts said, could cause a catastrophic setback for controlling COVID-19 in the U.S. as cities and states try to reopen.

"It makes me cringe on a number of levels," said Dr. Katie Passaretti, medical director for infection prevention at Atrium Health in Charlotte, North Carolina.

"It's a setup for further spread of COVID," Passaretti added. "It's heartbreaking."

Read the full story here.

Protesters in Minneapolis gather peacefully near the interstate

Frozen water bottles thrown at Boston police

A Boston Police department spokesperson says that largely peaceful protests have turned violent and officers have had frozen water bottles, bricks and rocks thrown at them in the last hour or so.

Several BPD vehicles have been damaged, police say. Right now, the area of Downtown Crossing is where police are having the most confrontation with protestors and they are now asking peaceful protesters to go home.

Nashville police arrest suspect in arson of historic courthouse

A man accused of setting fire to Nashville's Historic Courthouse during protests Saturday night has been arrested, police announced Sunday.

Wesley Somers, 25, was arrested on charges of felony arson, vandalism and disorderly conduct, and was to be booked, the Metro Nashville Police Department tweeted.

The courthouse was set on fire Saturday night and police said they used tear gas to disperse crowds.

Police had earlier tweeted images of three people, two of whom were seen damaging the building and one who appeared reaching toward flames seen coming out of a window. Police said that "assistance from the community" helped lead to the identification of Somers.

Police said the investigation into the arson attack on the courthouse was continuing. Nashville's government said Sunday that at least 30 Nashville businesses or buildings were damaged Saturday night, and that 28 people were arrested on or after a 10 p.m. curfew in the city.

Flash-bang grenades in Seattle

Tennessee governor orders National Guard to support Murfreesboro amid protests

Tennessee's governor said he backs the mayor of Murfreesboro in imposing a curfew amid violent protests there and said he authorized the National Guard to provide support.

Gov. Bill Lee earlier Sunday mobilized the National Guard amid protests. The mayor of Murfreesboro declared a state of emergency and a curfew.

Murfreesboro police said that they deployed tear gas after protesters blocked an intersection, and that an armored vehicle was vandalized and a brick was thrown through the window or a business.

Police said a peaceful protest, held in the wake of the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, was followed by violence.