LONG BEACH (CBSLA) – A curfew was in effect for Long Beach overnight Sunday after authorities reported that several Long Beach businesses were damaged and multiple people were arrested when peaceful protests over the death of George Floyd turned to looting and violence.
National Guard members were patrolling Long Beach early Monday morning, with a curfew in place from 8 p.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Monday. On Monday, Long Beach official issued a 1 p.m. curfew for business districts and a citywide curfew beginning at 4 p.m.
According to Long Beach police, a crowd of about 200 people taking part in a peaceful protest Sunday quickly swelled into 3,000. Police said that’s when a small group broke off and went into the Pike area and started looting businesses.
“80% of the people were doing the right thing — blocking the streets, signs, yelling – that’s OK,” Long Beach Police Chief Robert Luna said in a news conference Sunday. “What’s not OK, is you had individuals who came into the group and started to vandalize vehicles, throw items at police officers, and they’re the ones who started breaking away, went down into our Pike area and started to break windows and started looting stores.”
Several damaged businesses could seen boarded up Monday after looters empties shelves, carrying out armfuls of merchandise to waiting cars, shattering windows. Several police cruisers were also damaged.
At some points they clashed with protesters who urged them to stop. Long Beach police had to call in more than 100 officers from neighboring jurisdictions to assist in the response.
Several small fires were also set Sunday. One fire burned through the Men’s Suit Outlet at 655 Pine Ave. The looters at one point set off fireworks in the direction of officers.
Police Monday said 75 people were arrested on charges of looting, burglary and curfew violations.