A photo taken during the protests in Louisville, Kentucky Saturday night shows a group of black men forming a human shield around a white police officer who was separated from his unit. This was reminiscent of another photo from the Thursday night protests in the city, showing white women joining black women in a chain to protect black protesters behind them. Louisville has seen protests all week following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25 and Breonna Taylor in March.
Saturday marked the third night of protests in Louisville, reports the Courier-Journal. The protests were more peaceful compared to the previous events, but there were still clashes with police. Some protesters ignored the 9 p.m. curfew and there were clashes with police after midnight, into Sunday morning. Mayor Greg Frisher estimated that about 10 people were arrested.
Meanwhile this iconic shot out of Louisville of protestors protecting a cop who got separated from his unit. pic.twitter.com/4ySpUNjGoa— Bethany S. Mandel (@bethanyshondark) May 31, 2020
Louisville saw more violent and destructive protests on Thursday and Friday night. Fischer compared those riots to "terrorism... on the streets of our city" and if had to stop. He called Friday night a "very sad night for our city, and as violence has raged across many cities in our country, it has been a sad night for America."
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear also activated the National Guard, and about 350 soldiers arrived in the state's largest city Saturday afternoon. "I hope everybody knows this is a big step and a tough step, and it’s not one intended to silence any voice, because I want to hear," Beshear explained. "But I want to make sure at the end of the day that we are all safe."
Taylor was shot and killed on March 13 inside her Louisville apartment when police served a "no-knock warrant." Three police officers entered the home, and Taylor was shot eight times. Her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, was in the apartment at the time, and the officers claimed Walker fired first. Taylor's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Louisville Metro Police Department, alleging the officers did not announce they were police and began firing first. Their warrant was connected to an investigation into a drug house and two people were already in custody. One of the men previously had a relationship with Taylor.
On Saturday morning, Taylor's sister, Juniyah Palmer, was not happy that protests in her sister's name turned violent. "At this point, y’all are no longer doing this for my sister! You guys are just vandalizing stuff for NO reason," Palmer wrote on Facebook, reports WAVE. "I had a friend ask people why they are their most didn’t even know the 'protest' was for my sister."