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Members of the St. Louis Fire Department wrap up their work outside a vandalized and burned convenience store, Tuesday, June 2, 2020, in St. Louis. On Monday protesters gathered to speak out against the death of George Floyd who died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on May 25 before the night turned violent. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Things started out relatively calmly in St. Louis, yesterday. A gathering of several thousand people amassed in downtown St. Louis mid-afternoon, and marched from the Justice Center down to the Arch. By all accounts, that was a peaceful event.

Afterward, some of the protesters did make their way onto I-64 and blocked traffic for a period of time. Even that, however, resolved relatively quickly and without serious incident.

Another protest march was held yesterday evening in O’Fallon, Missouri, a western suburb of St. Louis. That, too, was peaceful.

Once the sun went down, things took a decided turn south. A 7-11 near downtown was looted and burned. A Family Dollar store was also burned.

 

A local historical home, the Campbell House and Museum, was set on fire, though it sounds as though firefighters were able to get that blaze under control. As reported by KMOX:

While some firefighters were working to put out a fire at the Campbell House Museum on Locust and 15th Streets, rocks and other debris were thrown at the firefighters. Video of the incident could be seen on live video feeds and reports of the incident were heard over police scanners. The historic museum was built in 1851 and is in the middle of a $1.8 million expansion project, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Things really took a turn after midnight, when four St. Louis police officers were shot while standing in formation. Multiple shots rang out, and it was not immediately clear how many individuals were responsible for it.

Police chief John Hayden was later interviewed and clearly distressed and exasperated by the situation.

Hayden noted these individuals had “no intention of protesting.” They threw gasoline on police officers, fireworks and rocks at them, broke windows and looted.  At one point, Chief Hayden became visibly emotional as he tried to make sense of the mayhem:

Some coward fired shots at officers, and now we have four in the hospital. But thankfully, and thank God, they’re alive, they’re alive. But I’m….I…why…can we make SOME sense out of this? Can we make some sense out of this?! That’s all I’m trying to say.

Mr. Floyd’s death is tragic but can we make something out of…something that these kids come down here and just start, like, like, like crazy, jumping up and down, like they’re enthused by the jumping, high-fiving each other, flourishing pistols. And as we speak, we’re trying to get control of the city. As we speak. Still hearing gun fire and everything.

And so, you all might have some questions…but I don’t know what else to say. This is horrible.

It makes me feel, I’m…I think how I feel right now, there’s a pit in my stomach. I’m stunned. And we need to pray for our city and pray for these officers.

Thankfully, none of the officers’ injuries are considered life-threatening. Although, unfortunately, they were not the only officers injured across the country last night.

And, sadly, it is now being reported that a retired police captain was shot and killed later while trying to defend Lee’s Pawn & Jewelry, his employer’s place of business.

Chief Hayden is right — we need to pray.

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Update: The retired police captain who was killed last night has now been identified as 77-year-old David Dorn:

Chief Hayden is right. This is horrible.

Susie Moore
Senior Copy Editor & Contributor at RedState
Attorney
Host of "Q With a View" on FTRRadio.com
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