Tens of thousands of people defied curfews to take to the streets of US cities for an eighth night of protests over the death of a black man in police custody, as National Guard troops lined the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

Clashes between protesters and police and looting of some stores in New York City gave way to relative quiet by night’s end. In Los Angeles, numerous demonstrators who stayed out after the city’s curfew were arrested.

But by late evening, conditions were quiet enough that local television stations switched from wall-to-wall coverage back to regular programming.
Large marches and rallies also took place in Philadelphia, Atlanta, Denver and Seattle.

In Portland, Oregon, crowds seemed to swell before 11pm local time. Police used stun grenades and tear gas on the crowd, calling it an “unlawful assembly”.

The scattering crowd shouted “peaceful protest,” back at police.
Evening curfews were ordered in dozens of cities following a week of protests over the death of 46-year-old George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.

Although rallies on behalf of Floyd and other victims of police brutality have been largely peaceful during the day, after dark each night crowds have turned to rioting, vandalism, arson and looting. On Monday night, five police officers were hit by gunfire in two cities.

Outside the US Capitol building on Tuesday afternoon a throng took to one knee, chanting “silence is violence” and “no justice, no peace,” as officers faced them just before the government-imposed curfew.

The crowd remained after dark, despite the curfew and vows by President Donald Trump to crack down on what he has called lawlessness by “hoodlums” and “thugs” – using the National Guard or even the US military if necessary.

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