BOSTON (CBS) – Boston streets were littered for miles with damage and debris Monday after what began as a peaceful protest of the death of George Floyd turned into riots Sunday night.
Photos: Boston Protests Turn Violent
The National Guard was called in as protesters looted stores, set fires and destroyed police vehicles from Downtown Crossing to Newbury and Boylston streets.
Boston Police Commissioner William Gross said they made 53 arrests - 27 people from Boston, 24 outside of Boston and two from other states. Twenty-one cruisers were damaged and Mayor Marty Walsh said nine officers had to be taken to the hospital. Several others were treated on the street. Transit police said several of their cruisers were damaged as well.
Walsh said 18 people were also hurt.
Boston Police detailed on Twitter just how fast things turned from peaceful to chaotic as the sun went down Sunday evening.
Officers were monitoring the crowds from the beginning, following them as they moved through the city. Then the calm marches took an ugly turn around 9 p.m. as officers used tear gas on protesters as fireworks and other objects were thrown at them.
At 9:14 p.m. police went to Twitter asking protestors to refrain from throwing things like glass bottles at officers. Less than 20 minutes later, there were reports of protestors throwing rocks and bricks.
Then at 9:40, they told peaceful protesters to leave the area.
At 10:32 p.m., police tweeted, "Every law abiding citizen in Boston should be praying for the safety and well-being of our officers. To be clear, our officers are fighting to protect our city from those who came to Boston looking to disrupt a peaceful protest and hurt and harm police officers."
By 11 p.m., the National Guard had been called in to help free up Boston Police officers as the destruction stretched for miles.
Store windows on several blocks were shattered and people were seen looting as late as 4:50 a.m. Monday.
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