MIAMI (CBSMiami) – While the vast majority of local protesters were peaceful, some looters and rioters were arrested in Miami-Dade County over the weekend.
Looters destroyed five businesses at the Bayside Marketplace on Saturday.
Many business owners already devastated by the coronavirus crisis spent the next day cleaning up damage.
“It was tough but we appreciate support,” said Mike Simpson with Island Queen Tours.
By Sunday night, the marketplace was secured.
Still looters, tried to get inside a CVS across from the AmericanAirlines Arena.
“Other protesters intervened and tried to stop them before our police department was able to get there,” said Miami Mayor Francis Suarez.
That’s something Suarez, other community leaders and protest organizers are emphasizing.
On Sunday, there were three arrests by the city of Miami police compared to the 57 on Saturday night.
A lot of the arrests were not locals. Suarez said some protesters were purposely there to cause trouble and take away from the fight for justice.
Some of the arrested already appeared in bond court. Suarez said many were found with items to deface property.
“There were two kinds of protests,” the mayor said. “An actual protest, which were people that were really upset about the injustice that occurred with George Floyd. And the fact that the other, second group of people, who came equipped to do damage.”
Despite the looting and cars set on fire by a small group on the first night of protests, Suarez said the way the weekend ended made him proud of the protesters and proud of his police.
“[Protests] were an indication of people who really care about sending the right message. That don’t want that message to be diluted by people trying not to do something positive,” he said. “I’m incredibly proud of the way Miamians displayed protests, displayed anger and their frustration over what happened.”
The city of Miami curfew has been lifted effective immediately. However, the mayor said the county curfew remains in effect and applies to city of Miami residents.