Washington: Five police officers were reportedly shot during clashes in US cities as protesters and looters defied curfews amid continued violence in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, a black man, in police custody.
Four police officers were shot in St Louis, Missouri, as authorities struggled to regain control of the city’s streets late into Monday evening. The officers, who were being treated for non-life-threatening injuries in hospital, were hit by gunfire as they stood next to a police line during violent disorder, said the chief of police, John Hayden.
People had been throwing rocks and fireworks, and had tried to throw petrol at officers, he added. “As we speak we are trying to get control of the city.”
In Nevada, a police officer was shot near the Las Vegas Strip, .
There were no details on the officer’s condition. Authorities were also responding to a second separate shooting in the area.
Two people were killed in Cicero, a Chicago suburb, according to the US media . Ray Hanania, a municipal official, told that 60 people in the town had been arrested, but did not give further details on the deaths.
The violence escalated after Donald Trump on Monday threatened to send American soldiers on to the streets to quell the worst unrest since the 1960s. As the US president was speaking, police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters who were demonstrating peacefully in Lafayette Square, a park in front of the White House.
Mr Trump then strode across the cleared area to St John’s Episcopal Church, where he posed for pictures holding a Bible, in a move critics condemned as a publicity stunt.