Mayor declares state of civil emergency following protests in Nashville, National Guard mobilized

Protests turn violent in Nashville, National Guard mobilized

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMC/WSMV) - Nashville Mayor John Cooper has declared a state of civil emergency following raging protests against police brutality Saturday evening.

Cooper has also set a 10 p.m. curfew for the city.

Cooper was in attendance at the Saturday afternoon rally and said it was peaceful in nature while encouraging social distancing and the use of masks due to the coronavirus.

But as the evening went on, WSMV News 4 has reported damage to buildings and officers were attacked in Downtown Nashville. The Edward Carmack statue was also knocked over at the State Capitol, according to State Rep. Jason Zachary.

A fire started in the Metro Nashville Courthouse as well.

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee has authorized the National Guard to mobilize in response to Nashville protests saying the protests have taken a violent turn.

Protests have sparked across the nation following the death of Minneapolis man George Floyd after he died while in police custody Monday

This week video surfaced of Floyd pinned to the ground with an officer kneeling on his neck. Floyd can be heard repeatedly saying “I can’t breathe.”

Demonstrators are calling for judicial change regarding police brutality against African Americans not only in Floyd’s case but hundreds of others including Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, which have also sparked public outcry.

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