Updated August 29, 2020
While California State Senators were being locked out of the State Capitol yesterday because one of their caucus members tested positive for COVID-19, Antifa and Black Lives Matter rioters and protesters were gearing up for a protest Thursday evening.
“Mask Up. Wear Black. No Logos. Bring Friends. Don’t Snitch. No Good Cops. No Peace Police” an online protest poster said.
Antifa Sacramento posted an announcement on Facebook:
“Solidarity to the demonstrators in Kenosha, especially to the loved ones of those who were murdered. Your bravery and defiance in the face of both intrapersonal and institutional white supremacy is truly inspiring.
Sacramento! There will be a demonstration tomorrow, (8/27/20) at 8:00 PM at Cesar Chavez Park in solidarity with Kenosha.
Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, the former California State Senate President, issued a statement about the planned protests/riots:
“The police shooting of Jacob Blake has once again revealed the sickness in America that never goes away. Once again, Black Americans and all people of conscience have been traumatized by seeing someone who could be their child, their parent or their partner gunned down by police. And they have reacted with the same outrage any of us would feel had that been our loved one and when forced to endure systemic racism that never seems to go away, and which too many people who look like me pretend doesn’t even exist.”
“Tonight we expect two protests. The people of Sacramento do not need their Mayor or any city official to approve or sanctify the power of peaceful, principled protest. I am grateful to live in a city where people care enough to take to the streets after a hard day’s work to stand in solidarity with one another and other communities in pain. I support this and will always support this. It is the second after dark protest where I have an issue.”
We now are learning Jacob Blake had a knife inside his vehicle when he was shot seven times by a Wisconsin police officer as he opened the SUV’s door, Wisconsin DOJ revealed Wednesday. We also now are seeing evidence that George Floyd died from an overdose of Fentanyl. These are not excuses for police violence, but these details go a long way in explaining what led up to these men’s deaths.
Friday morning, it was evident that downtown Sacramento sustained more damage to local businesses and public buildings. Businesses boarded up what they could ahead of the protests, but smashed windows and spray painted and tagged buildings were prominent. The Sacramento District Attorney’s Office and Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office were hard hit, with reports that rioters tried to light the District Attorney’s office on fire.
We are receiving reports of subjects attempting to light a fire at the DA’s office. The fire has been extinguished. There have also been reports of vandalism including spray paint and broken windows. pic.twitter.com/dKXeIj6fcn
— Sacramento Police (@SacPolice) August 28, 2020
No arrests were made. Why?
After pledging solidarity with Portland recently, Mayor Steinberg changed his tune and rightly warned in his blog post, “Vandalizing or destroying Sacramento’s businesses is not principled protest. These hard-working business owners, many from our diverse communities, are struggling to serve our community during the Covid pandemic. Targeting them is cruel and doesn’t recognize the humanity of those who have poured the lives and their savings into enlivening our downtown and our neighborhoods.”
The Sacramento Bee reported:
“About 15 California Highway Patrol officers stood on the west steps of the Capitol as dozens of protesters stood on 10th Street, using a bullhorn to amplify their message. A Sacramento Bee reporter saw two men working their way through the crowd wearing ski masks, gas masks, sunglasses and ballistic-style vests. One man pushed a handcart filled with gas masks.”
These same protesters are calling for the Sacramento City Council to defund Sacramento Police Department, as they wreak destruction throughout downtown.
Demonstrators headed down H. Just passed 9th. pic.twitter.com/YWD5wxZCKQ
— Stephanie Lin (@StephanieLinTV) August 28, 2020
A source sent the Globe a message as she arrived at work Friday morning in downtown Sacramento:
“I’m at the office right now and I saw more businesses boarding up this morning as I drove down J Street. I think last night was riot-lite to get a feel for security. Steinberg should request the National Guard ASAP. It stopped them last time.”
She warned that she is hearing there will be two more much larger riots/protests Friday and Saturday nights.
Antifa has threatened they will start targeting people in their homes as well as downtown businesses.
Protesters marched to the State Capitol where they were met with the Capitol’s California Highway Patrol officers in riot gear.
Many believe Thursday’s protests were light because most of the paid, professional protesters are still in Seattle and Portland. But concern that these professional rioters are making their way back to Sacramento is real.
Black Lives Matter yard signs were all over the city Friday morning, and in public parks.
Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones on Friday requested the National Guard be deployed to downtown Sacramento after Thursday’s protesters vandalized more businesses, broke windows at the downtown offices of the sheriff, district attorney and other government agencies the night before.
Yet the Bee reported: “A peaceful protest at Cesar E. Chavez Plaza downtown gave way to vandalism by separate groups after 8 p.m.”
Jones, showing photographs of protesters wearing body armor during Thursday’s protest, referred to the demonstrations as an “attempted insurrection,” the Bee reported. Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert correctly described the actions as a planned attack, given all of the promoting done on social media ahead of the protests.
“It’s been one day and I’m already done with this,” Jones said in a Friday afternoon news conference.
”I’m confident that we can handle our own business here,” Mayor Steinberg said.
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