Angry crowds have gathered in cities across the country to demand justice after George Floyd’s death after being arrested on Monday for a fake bill. Outrage grew after a video appeared showing a Minneapolis policeman kneeling on his neck during the arrest. He was unarmed and handcuffed and cried that he could not breathe until he later died.
In Minneapolis, buildings were burned down, shops were ransacked, and a police station was set on fire on Thursday evening. Smoke and orange flames filled the night sky as people gathered nearby and made videos on their cell phones.
Minneapolis police have released the four officers involved in Floyd̵
Local, state, and federal authorities are investigating the incident, and the prosecutor urged residents to be patient.
“We have to go through all of this evidence and make a sensible decision, and we are doing our best to do so,” said Hennepin District Attorney Michael Freeman.
Attorney Erica MacDonald told reporters that the priority is to ensure justice.
“We will investigate it as quickly and thoroughly as the judiciary requires,” said Freeman. “This video is graphic, terrible, and terrible. And nobody should do that. I ask individuals to stay calm and let us do this investigation.”
All four officials involved in the death have asserted their right to a fifth change against self-blame, Freeman told CNN after the press conference.
“I am absolutely sorry for the pain, devastation and trauma that Mr. Floyd’s death left behind for his family, loved ones, Minneapolis and the world,” said Medaria Arradondo, Minneapolis chief of police.
“I know that there is currently a deficit of hope in our city … and I know that our department has contributed to this deficit as a whole.”
Minneapolis has seen protests and looting south of downtown where people have broken into shops and set stores and other buildings on fire. In St. Paul, the state capital next door, there were further looting on Thursday.
“I want everyone to be peaceful at the moment, but people are torn and hurt because they’re tired of watching black men die,” said Philonise Floyd, the victim’s brother.
Demonstrators have also gathered in other cities, including Denver and New York.
CNN’s Sara Sidner and Steve Almasy contributed to this report.