For businesses just coming off of a pandemic lock down, eager for customers to return and keep their businesses a float, weekend events have pushed owners that much farther back as they work to recover from the path of destruction of looters.
Following two days of protesting activity in Phoenix, large groups formed in the downtown Scottsdale and Scottsdale Fashion square area Saturday evening.
Scottsdale’s Fashion Square closed early Saturday in preparation, but Sunday morning brought a disappointing outcome of property destruction, loss of goods, vandalism and clean up.
Around 9:20 a.m., the Scottsdale Police Department announced that Camelback Road was also closed from Goldwater Boulevard to Scottsdale Road due to night’s criminal activity.
Saturday night around 10 p.m., multiple stores at Fashion Square Mall were damaged by looters, including Neiman Marcus, Urban Outfitters and the Apple Store.
About an hour later, Scottsdale police declared the gathering to be an unlawful assembly, thereby subjecting anyone still in attendance to arrest. 12 arrests were reportedly made in Scottsdale Saturday evening.
As of result of Saturday’s night destruction, Scottsdale’s Fashion Square announced due to the aftermath that the mall would be closed on Sunday.
Across the valley, on Saturday evening, protesters were not limited to Scottsdale. Protesters returned to the streets of downtown Phoenix for a third consecutive night.
In Saturday night’s activity, the group of protesters gathered around Phoenix City Hall, marching west chanting “no justice, no peace” around 8:30 p.m.
Around 10:30 p.m., Phoenix police also had to declare an unlawful assembly. Loud bang sounds were heard after five hours of what initially started off as peaceful protesting.
Gov. Doug Ducey tweeted out a message Saturday evening that the Arizona National Guard would be helping Phoenix Police and the Arizona departments of public safety and transportation.
Buildings around Phoenix were damaged again on Saturday night, as Talking Stick Resort arena and other local businesses were spray-painted.
In addition to the many government buildings, the Arizona Federal Theatre, FOX10 and other surrounding buildings that had been vandalized with graffiti, paint and broken windows on Friday. Eight Police vehicles also had windows smashed and or tires slashed. It is reported that 100 arrests were made in Phoenix on Saturday night.
According to Police Chief Jerri Williams, the damage from Friday’s activities will cost the city hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Speaker Pro Tempore of the Arizona House of Representatives T.J. Shope took to Twitter on Saturday night and condemned the violence in Scottsdale saying it was not a protest.
The protests come in response to Monday’s deaths of Minnesotan George Floyd and Arizonan Dion Johnson at the hands of law enforcement.
Ducey issues statewide Declaration of Emergency, weeklong curfew
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey issued a statewide emergency declaration announcing a weeklong curfew will take effect at 8 p.m. Sunday.
In several tweets, the governor stated the curfew will last one week and that the decision was made in coordination with law enforcement officials.
“This gives law enforcement an additional tool to prevent the lawlessness we’ve seen here and in cities nationwide,” he added.
“Today’s declaration also authorizes an expanded National Guard mobilization to protect life and property throughout the state. Our office will continue to communicate with local law enforcement to provide whatever resources we can.”