Communities on the mend after days of protests


Across America volunteers gather to cleanup after days of riots and looting

Jessica Knutson, and her daughter Abigail, 3, place flowers at a memorial to George Floyd, Sunday, May 31, 2020, in Minneapolis. Protests continued following the death of Floyd, who died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on May 25. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

ARKANSAS (KNWA/KFTA) — Across the country, violent protests took place in response to the death of George Floyd.

Floyd, 46, a black man, was killed by a white police officer in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota on Monday, May 25.

Video from an onlooker shows the officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds. At times Floyd could be heard saying, “I can’t breathe,” as he cried out for his “mama,” who died three years ago. Around six minutes into the incident, Floyd became silent. He was taken to the Hennepin County Medical Center in an ambulance and about an hour later he was pronounced dead. The medical examiner gave the time of death as 9:25 p.m.

Following Floyd’s death, protests began Tuesday, May 26, in Minneapolis-St. Paul then spread across the country and globally.

The on-going mass protests resulted in mass damages in cities from coast-to-coast and north to south.

Now, it’s about the mass cleanup and getting the cities back to business — amid a pandemic.

Picking up the pieces in Birmingham, Alabama is underway after a raucous weekend of protests.

Jermaine “FunnyMaine” Johnson, is raising funds to repair businesses in Birmingham. Johnson did call for the removal of confederate monuments in Alabama.

Birmingham Alabama is under a state of emergency and a 7 p.m. curfew as of Monday, June 1. Birmingham local Jermaine Johnson, @FunnyMaine, spoke with anchor/reporter Conan Gasque, from WIAT.
“RIP Freddie Gray” is seen on a building near the White House in Washington, Monday, June 1, 2020, after a night of protests over the death of George Floyd. Floyd died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Floyd’s death happened about five years after that of Freddie Gray, 25.

Gray, a black man, was arrested by Baltimore police on April 12, 2015, for possession of a switchblade. He was placed in a police transport van — that supposedly made three stops. Forty-five minutes later he was found unconscious, with his spinal cord nearly severed.

He was taken to an area hospital, was in a coma, and died a week later. After an investigation, six officers were suspended with pay.

Separate trials were held for the officers.

  • Officer William G. Porter: involuntary manslaughter, 2nd-degree assault, office misconduct. Mistrial.
  • Officer Caesar Goodson, Jr.: 2nd-degree depraved heart murder, involuntary manslaughter, 2nd-degree assault, gross and criminal negligence, office misconduct. Not guilty on all charges.
  • Officer Garrett Miller: 2nd-degree assault, false imprisonment, office misconduct. All charges dropped.
  • Officer Edward Nero: 2nd-degree assault, false imprisonment, office misconduct. Not guilty on all charges.
  • Lt. Brian Rice: involuntary manslaughter, 2nd-degree assault, gross negligence, false imprisonment, office misconduct. Not guilty on all charges.
  • Sgt. Alicia White: involuntary manslaughter, 2nd-degree assault, misconduct. All charges dropped.
Jazmin Holloway sits below a mural depicting Freddie Gray at the intersection of his arrest, Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015, in Baltimore. The first effort to find a police officer criminally responsible for Freddie Gray’s death from a broken neck in a police van ended Wednesday with a hung jury and a mistrial. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

On April 25, 2015, a series of protests, that turned violent, happened.

FILE – In this Monday, April 27, 2015 file photo, a man walks past a burning police vehicle amid unrest following the funeral of Freddie Gray in Baltimore. Gray died from spinal injuries about a week after he was arrested and transported in a Baltimore Police Department van. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

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