New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Monday that he would establish a curfew in the capital after protests over the death of George Floyd ended in violence. There will also be an increase in police forces in the city.
The curfew goes from Monday at 11 pm to 5 am local time. It is not clear whether the measure will continue for the following nights. According to the government, violating the guidance could result in up to three months in prison or a $ 500 fine (2,600 reais at current price). Other large urban centers, such as Los Angeles, Atlanta, and the capital Washington, had already announced the measure.
"I spoke with the mayor (Bill de Blasio), there will be a curfew in New York City that we think will be useful," said Cuomo. The governor and the mayor said the move was necessary to prevent looting and violent clashes, announcing that the New York Police Department would double the number of police on the streets.
According to the American newspaper The New York Times, the city has implemented a curfew in parks in the past to fight crime. However, this is the first time that a generalized curfew has been adopted – it has not even been an option even to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
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"The demonstrations have generally been peaceful," the Democratic mayor said in a statement. “We cannot let violence undermine the message of this moment. It is very important and the message must be heard. ” The mayor's own daughter, Chiara de Blasio, who is black, was arrested during a protest in Manhattan, accused of disobeying police orders to empty a street, according to a police report obtained by The New York Post.
The 25-year-old received a court summons and was released. At a press conference, De Blasio said his daughter's version of the incident was different from the one recorded by the police and that she was just protesting peacefully when she was arrested. “I love my daughter deeply. She just wants to do good for the world, ”said the mayor.
The Times reports that among those exempt from the curfew are health professionals, employees of essential services – such as pharmacies and supermarkets – and journalists. Homeless people are also exempt.
On Sunday, peaceful demonstrations in response to the death of George Floyd, a black man who was smothered by a white policeman on the 25th, being unarmed, became violent, with fires and looted shops. Clashes between protesters and police officers spread across Manhattan and Brooklyn, where glass bottles and garbage were thrown at security forces while police officers used batons and made arrests.
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Authorities warned that the protests could contribute to the proliferation of the coronavirus and harm the city, which is preparing to reopen after months of lockdown.