What started as a peaceful protest in Sioux Falls ended in rioting. A protest and march started in downtown Sioux Falls around 5 pm on Sunday. Thousands of participants marched the streets of Sioux Falls to protest the death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers in Minneapolis.

Around 9 pm Sunday night hundreds of protesters converged in the area of the Empire Mall. Rocks were thrown at windows shattering glass and some looting was reported. Tear gas was fired into the estimated crowd of 700 to 1200 people.

Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken conducted a late evening press conference where he announced the National Guard had been deployed and that a curfew is in place until 7 am Monday morning for the city of Sioux Falls.

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem release a video stating “South Dakota hoped for the best but prepared for the worst. We activated the National Guard the minute things turned violent in Sioux Falls. This is a specialized unit that is prepared for situations like this. We take the protection of rights very seriously, including the right to peacefully protest, but rioting and looting will not be tolerated in South Dakota. Make no mistake, mob rule and violence do nothing to honor the memory of victims.”

According to Dakota News Now, 15-20 gunshots were heard Sunday evening in the area of T.J. Max nest to the Empire Mall on Louise Ave. There have been reports of damaged cars, broken windows in several businesses, vandalism, and looting.

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