San Francisco Enacts Curfew Effective Immediately Following Looting, Vandalism During Protests

KCBS Radio Weekend News
May 30, 2020 - 3:58 pm

Related: PHOTOS: Bay Area Protesters March Over George Floyd's Death

Updated 11:26 p.m.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed has announced a city-wide curfew between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m., effective immediately. The National Guard has been put on standby.

"If you are home, please stay home," Breed said in the announcement, broadcast live on social media late Saturday. "If you are in our city from other places, please go back to the city that you live in. Please do not come into San Francisco and destroy our city. We have so many challenges. We have so much need in this city."

The announcement follows protests Saturday on the streets of San Francisco, Santa Rosa and around the East Bay over police brutality and the Minneapolis Police killing of George Floyd.

The Associated Press is reporting over 1,400 arrests in cities around the country since Thursday.

"We want to make sure our city is a platform for people to express themselves," Breed said. "But when it crosses the line, that's not good for any of us. It's not how you honor the memory of the people who sadly have lost their lives to senseless violence."

In Los Angeles, Gov. Gavin Newsom has declared a State of Emergency and has approved a request to deploy the National Guard. LA's curfew is also from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m.

KCBS Radio's Kathy Novak followed a large demonstration that started outside the San Francisco Police station at Valencia St. and 17th St. in the Mission neighborhood. The group moved through the Civic Center, Tenderloin and Union Square, smashing windows along the way. Looters also entered the Saks Off 5th store in Market St. and several people have left with clothes and merchandise. A group has reportedly broken into the CVS location at 7th and Market St and an Urban Outfitters store.

Looters enter the Saks 5th Avenue store on Market St. in San Francisco.
Kathy Novak/KCBS Radio

"We have officers at Union Square dealing with looting, dealing with people breaking windows, tearing down businesses that people have spent their lives to build," San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott said. "If you're a San Franciscan, is that what you want?"

Late Saturday, a number of protestors blocked the on-ramp to Highway 101 near Octavia St. There were reports of bottles and objects being thrown, but no confirmed injuries.

"We want to make sure our city is a platform for people to express themselves," Breed pleaded. "But when it crosses the line, that's not good for any of us. It's not how you honor the memory of the people who sadly have lost their lives to senseless violence."

Hundreds of protesters first stopped under the freeway at 13th St. and Mission St. where officers were blocking the on-ramp.

Protesters gather in San Francisco's Mission neighborhood Saturday night.
Kathy Novak/KCBS Radio

In Santa Rosa, we find KCBS Radio's Mike DeWald, where a large group is in the Courthouse Square with signs.

What was a peaceful protest quickly turned frightening, as a pickup truck drove straight through a crowd of people. There are no confirmed injuries at this time.

The group went by the Santa Rosa Police Department, leaving graffiti on the building. Hundreds of demonstrators made their way on to Highway 101 near the Sebastopol/Sonoma exit. Officers were able to disperse the group with use of tear gas following a lengthy standoff, which included shouting and chanting.

A group of protesters in Santa Rosa's courthouse square Saturday night.
Mike DeWald/KCBS Radio

KCBS Radio's Matt Bigler was in Emeryville and Oakland, where followed reports of looting at a Best Buy store, H&M location and a nearby Game Stop. One witness tells KCBS Radio "rioters" had a confrontation with police and then descended on the stores. A long line of police officers in riot gear entered a Decathalon store as it was being hit by looters. There also appeared to be a large group of onlookers gathering in the area, who were not participating in the demonstrations or looting.

Mayors across the Bay Area are calling for people to stay home Saturday night, because of the threat of violence and we're in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.

"We are struggling with a deadly pandemic," Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said. "We are under a shelter-in-place order and we ask everyone to stay home and ensure that your children, your loved ones, your neighbors stay home."

Schaaf believes Friday's protest in Oakland crossed a line.

Earlier Saturday, a group started at United Nations Plaza in San Francisco, moved to City Hall and eventually made its way to the 1st St. on-ramp to the Bay Bridge, where they were met by a blockade of California Highway Patrol officers. The crowd held signs saying "No Justice, No Peace" and "Black Lives Matter."

In response, the protest turned into an impromptu rally with various speakers at a megaphone before heading to AT&T Park.

Protesters blocked traffic at 4th St. and Bryant St., sitting on the ground and chanting.

"I am sick and tired of coming to these protests," a passionate speaker told the crowd of hundreds in attendance.

The rally started in UN Plaza. That's where we met Oscar Salinas, who says he lost his brother to police brutality in 2014.

"I just happened to be through it and I just come here to bring my experience," Salinas told KCBS Radio’s Jennifer Hodges.

Protesters march down Market St. towards The Embarcadero.
Jessica Yi/KCBS Radio

One protester broke the back windshield of what was thought to be an unmarked police vehicle before others surrounded another police vehicle and pleaded for a peaceful demonstration.

"I’ve watched community hurt," Salinas said. "I’ve watched it over and over. Even after all the change that we try to do, it still continues to happen."

A protester holds a sign at a San Francisco George Floyd rally.
Jennifer Hodges/KCBS Radio

"There are a lot of innocent people that are dying," one man said. "There are a lot of innocent people that need change. There’s a lot of people that are causing the affliction and they need the change in their life too."

The demonstrations follow a Friday night protest in Oakland that left smashed windows and vandalism throughout downtown.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.