KEY POINTS

  • Protesters in Los Angeles and Memphis block roads over the death of George Floyd
  • Highway patrol cars in LA were attacked but Memphis protests end peacefully
  • Trump said he “ordered” FBI and DOJ to investigate Floyd’s death

Protests over the death of George Floyd spread as roads in Los Angeles, California and Memphis, Tennessee were blocked by protesters Wednesday.

Floyd was a black 46-year-old man who was shown on video pleading for his life as a white Minneapolis police officer pinned him to the ground with a knee to his neck.  He was transported by paramedics and died at a county hospital after suffering what officers said was "medical distress."

His death sparked outrage across the United States and led to the firing of the four Minneapolis police officers involved in his death. Protests in Minneapolis that continued for a second day erupted into violence with reports of vandalism and looting. One man was shot dead during the riots.

In Los Angeles, protesters blocked the 101 Freeway and broke the windows of patrol cruisers belonging to California Highway Patrol (CHP).

Footage of the incident showed demonstrators attacking at least two CHP cars with boards before both drove away. One man even hopped onto the first car before he was thrown off from the moving vehicle.

The protests continued to move through downtown LA but most protesters dispersed by 7:30 p.m. There was a stampede at around 9:00 p.m. when a car hit a protester and quickly fled the scene as police tried to disperse the remaining demonstrators.

Meanwhile, protests in Memphis ended peacefully at 1:20 a.m. Thursday (May 28) after police removed barricades set up in Midtown.

Officers in riot gear arrived at 11:00 p.m. and asked protesters to leave. Memphis police arrested two people who did not comply.

FOX13 reported that some officers were speaking with and listening to some of the demonstrators who eventually dispersed.

In a tweet, President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he had requested the FBI and the Department of Justice to investigate Floyd’s death.

“My heart goes out to George’s family and friends. Justice will be served!” Trump said in another tweet.

During a trip to watch the delayed SpaceX rocket launch in Florida, Trump said that Floyd’s death was “very, very sad.”

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden also called for the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division to investigate Floyd's death before Trump’s tweet.

“[Floyd’s death] sends a very clear message to the black community and black lives that are under threat every single day,” Biden said in a statement.