CRANSTON, R.I. (WPRI) ─ Members of the Rhode Island National Guard have set a perimeter around both the Warwick Mall and Garden City Center for a potentially violent protest Tuesday evening after reports of “planned violence” surfaced on social media.
Towns and cities across the state have issued curfews after receiving similar reports:
- Central Falls: 8:30 p.m. – 5 a.m. (until June 3)
- Coventry: 10 p.m. – 5 a.m. (until further notice)
- Cranston: 8:30 p.m. – 5 a.m. (until June 3)
- Cumberland: 8:30 p.m. – 6 a.m. (until June 9)
- East Providence: 9 p.m. – 5 a.m. (until June 3)
- Pawtucket: 8:30 p.m. – 5 a.m. (until June 3)
- Providence: 9 p.m. – 6 a.m. (until June 9)
- Warwick: 8:30 p.m. – 5 a.m. (until June 3)
- West Warwick 10 p.m. – 6 a.m. (until June 6)
Access to Sockanosset Cross Road was blocked off Tuesday afternoon and businesses were boarded up as a precaution. The scene was similar at Warwick Mall, where police blocked off entrances to the mall parking lots and other businesses nearby.
Hundreds of people took to the streets of Providence early Tuesday morning in what Rhode Island State Police Col. James Manni referred to as a coordinated attack on the city.
The violence stems from the death of George Floyd, a Minneapolis man who was pinned down by an officer who kneeled on his neck, despite the fact he was pleading that he couldn’t breathe.
By daybreak, several businesses in Providence had been looted, nine officers were injured, 65 people were arrested and a police cruiser had been torched.