Looting in AC and Trenton after most NJ protests stay peaceful
ATLANTIC CITY — After what started as a peaceful protest hours earlier, the city was declared to be under a state of emergency as looting and other violent behavior erupted Sunday night, according to city police.
"Unfortunately, the peaceful protest that took place earlier by many has transitioned to criminal activity now taking place by a few. If you can, avoid Atlantic City at this time," Atlantic City Police shared on Twitter around 6:30 p.m.
Atlantic City Office of Emergency Management enacted an overnight curfew from 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. "During this time, only those individuals that are traveling to or from work or seeking medial/police assistance will be permitted. All others are subject to arrest," the city's OEM announced.
Philadelphia Inquirer reporter Amy Rosenberg shared video to her Twitter feed of attempted looting at several stores at the Tangers Outlet, as seen in the clip below.
In Trenton, a similar turning point was caught on Facebook live by Maurice Lennon.
After protestors marched downtown, even joined at one point by Trenton police officers who took a knee in apparent solidarity, sporadic violence began, including broken windows at a Bank of America and the looting of a Snipes sneaker store, as seen in Lennon's video.
Earlier Sunday, other social media users posted video of the peaceful march down the Atlantic City boardwalk, in honor of George Floyd, the unarmed black man who died under the knee of a since fired Minneapolis police officer.
Rosenberg also shared a video clip of Atlantic City Police Chaplain Eric McCoy, who told the reporter that people “want to be heard” and have to figure out how to take care of each other.
Information on potential injuries or arrests was not immediately known, shortly after the curfew began.
Other protests across New Jersey earlier in the weekend had been largely peaceful.
Among those attracting the most attention was in Camden County, where police took part in a Saturday unity walk, "to stand in solidarity and unity with all residents who are rightfully angered, concerned and upset about the actions of the officers in Minneapolis and the murder of George Floyd," Police Chief Joe Wysocki said in a written statement.
Newark Mayor Ras Baraka also marched Saturday with protestors organized by the civil rights group The People's Organization for Progress.