LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- About 2,000 people gathered in downtown Las Vegas on Saturday in a third night of protests sparked by the death of George Floyd.
The protest on May 30 started in front of Downtown Container Park at 7th and Fremont streets. Organizers on the event's Facebook page said people need to "organize to eradicate police terrorism ... Impactful solutions are needed to address the continued attacks to be able to heal and grow our resources ..."
From 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., the protest remained peaceful along Fremont Street. Just after 10 p.m., Las Vegas police and SWAT used tear gas on the crowd. It wasn't clear what led to that action.
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Lt. Frank Humel said there were about 1,500 to 2,000 people involved about 10:45 p.m.
Humel said officers had made arrests, but they did not know how many. "Protesters have vandalized cars, broken windows and continue to throw objects including Molotov cocktails."
Humel said it was necessary to use CS gas, also known as tear gas. He confirmed one report of looting, saying about 50 looters targeted the EZ Pawn store on the 200 block of Las Vegas Boulevard around 11 p.m.
Part of the protesters marched to CCDC, they’re walking toward the direction of city hall now. There is still a big crowd at Container Park too. pic.twitter.com/67zd66drCu— Kyla Galer (@kylagaler) May 31, 2020
Saturday's protest marked the third day of demonstrations in Las Vegas.
About 200 to 300 people gathered on the Las Vegas Strip Friday night. The protest resulted in 80 arrests and 12 officers injured.
Protests have been happening nationwide in response to Floyd's death. Many of the protests were marked with property destruction and fires.
Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve set an immediate curfew following destruction in the city.
Effective immediately, we have instituted a curfew for the City of Reno. Citizens are advised to stay indoors and avoid public gatherings. Peaceful protest and the right to assembly are sacred. Violence and destruction are not. (2/3)— Mayor Hillary Schieve (@MayorSchieve) May 31, 2020
Soon after Mayor Schieve's announcement, Washoe County Commissioner Bob Lucey announced a curfew for the entire county through 7 a.m. Sunday.
Lucey tweeted he has been in contact with Gov. Steve Sisolak and the Washoe County Sheriff's Office to "ensure safety of our entire region."
Reno Police Chief Jason Soto announced about 8:45 p.m. the National Guard would respond to downtown Reno for the "unlawful assembly."
Based on circumstances going on in Reno and at the request of local leaders, I have activated members of the @nvnationalguard to secure government buildings.— Governor Sisolak (@GovSisolak) May 31, 2020
"Their role and the mission of the Guard is to help keep local government buildings secure. This will help Reno Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies protect residents and disperse crowds," said a press release from Gov. Sisolak's office. "Nevada’s adjutant general mobilized members of the Guard under direction of Gov. Sisolak after receiving a call for aid from Reno officials."
Nevada Department of Public Safety’s Highway Patrol, Investigations and Fire Marshal Divisions, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and City of Sparks Police Department had previously been called to assist Reno Police.
CALLS FOR PEACE
Prior to the protest, community leaders were joined by Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Sheriff Joe Lombardo in a press conference to address the protests.
SOME DOWNTOWN BARS CLOSE
Several downtown Las Vegas bars and restaurants announced on Saturday they would stay closed due to the protest at Downtown Container Park.
Commonwealth, Park on Fremont and Downtown Cocktail Room said on Facebook they would stay closed due to the protest.
"The safety of our guests and staff are of the up to most importance so we’ve decide to close in an abundance of caution. We apologize for any inconvenience," posted Commonwealth, a popular bar and nightclub at 6th and Fremont.
Commonwealth's post said it would reopen at 10 p.m. on Sunday. Park on Fremont shared a similar statement, saying they would reopen Sunday at 5 p.m.
Downtown Cocktail Room had earlier shared a post about reopening Saturday night, however soon shared, "Contrary to our previous posts, we will not be open tonight as planned. Apologies if we got your hopes up."
A bartender at Atomic Liquors at 10th and Fremont streets told FOX5 they would be open, but only for indoor seating to keep their guests contained. The outdoor patio facing the street would remain closed Saturday night.
Griffin confirmed to FOX5 they would remain closed Saturday night.
Evel Pie, the punk rock pizzeria in between Las Vegas Boulevard and 6th Street, posted on Facebook they reopened at 4 p.m. on Saturday and will be open until midnight.
Neonopolis, home to Nerd Bar, Don't Tell Mama piano bar and Cat's Meow karaoke, is staying open Saturday night, said owner Rohit Joshi. Security will be on-site.
Carson Kitchen announced it would stay open:
There’s a lot of talk about the recent protests making their way to downtown Las Vegas this evening. Many businesses are understandably closing. We have chosen to remain open. It is our greatest passion to connect to our guests and our community. We firmly believe we should continue to try to do so even in our most difficult times.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.