At least two large protests are ongoing in Anaheim, with demonstrators vocally objecting to the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd, a Black man, joining a national movement of protests that have also witnessed looting and riots across the nation over the past week.
On Monday, President Donald J. Trump announced that military intervention was being considered for American cities experiencing rioting.
It’s the third day of protests in Orange County with minor disturbances in Santa Ana last Saturday.
“I can’t breathe,” was the dominant chant of nearly a thousand protesters marching at Anaheim’s La Palma Park, repeating the last words of Floyd before a police officer choked him to death.
On the corner of La Palma Ave and Harbor Boulevard, on Monday afternoon, a continuous flow of people were pouring in as of 5 p.m. amidst a series of chants and car horns.
Anaheim officials have set a 6 p.m. curfew for tonight.
While marchers are peaceful they are also visibly angry.
A large group of protesters left the park around 5 p.m. headed down Harbor Boulevard toward city hall.
Anaheim city hall has been boarded up along with nearly all the downtown businesses and those near La Palma Park including the Northgate Supermarket. Many of the local businesses were all shutting down early and by around 5 p.m. the only local businesses visibly open were the Del Taco and the 7-11.
At about 5:45 p.m. Anaheim PD provided an update from the steps of city hall on Instagram.
Shortly after a joint statement from Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu and Chief of Police Jorge Cisneros calling for safe protests, a 6 p.m. curfew was issued by City Manager Greg Garcia.
The curfew ends at 5:30 a.m. Tuesday.
“It is out of an abundance of caution to allow people to peacefully express themselves up until 6 p.m. and to keep our community safe after 6 p.m.,” city spokesman Mike Lyster said in a text message.
Despite no protests that have happened or any planned in the city, Costa Mesa again issued a curfew Monday night, the second day in a row.
Santa Ana had a 10 p.m. curfew Sunday night.
Anaheim saw a series of protests in 2012 after 25-year-old Manuel Diaz was shot and killed by police while apparently unarmed and fleeing by foot in a poor Latino neighborhood known as Anna Drive.
Diaz’s death in 2012, and the shooting of another young Latino man, Joel Acevedo, the next day touched off days of protests in front of city hall.