Gov. DeWine activates National Guard, Columbus Mayor announces city-wide curfew
Saturday evening, Gov. Mike DeWine announced he was activating the Ohio National Guard to “drive out hate, violence and instill order” following large protests sparked by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
“This is about the safety of our communities, our neighbors, our families and our friends,” Gov. DeWine said during a press conference.
Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther also spoke at the news briefing announcing the implementation of a city-wide curfew from 10 p.m. to 6 p.m. Ginther says the curfew goes into effect Saturday night. Anyone out during that time frame can be arrested, Ginther says.
“We respect, value and welcome the right to protest,” Mayor Ginther said. “This curfew is not intended to stifle peaceful protest but to protect our people.”
Mayor Ginther said Friday evening 100 public and private properties were damaged and five officers were injured during violent protests in the city.
Gov. DeWine said Saturday he “understands that people have pent up rage” but, that in these times of uncertainty and division he urged Ohioans to “call upon the better angels” of their nature.
Gov. DeWine says the voices calling for justice and change are being drowned out by a smaller group of violent individuals that are threatening the safety of communities.
“The majority of demonstrators want to be heard. They want to focus attention on the tragic death of George Floyd and on other injustices. We always welcome such voices,” said Gov. DeWine. “Acts of violence will not be accepted nor tolerated. This violence must stop.”
Gov. DeWine says he is ordering the Ohio State Highway Patrol to help enforce the criminal laws in Columbus.