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Protesters graffitied the CNN logo, smashed windows and threw inside what appeared to be a firecracker at the Atlanta headquarters of the news network during the fourth night of protests over George Floyd’s death Friday night.
Images and video captured by news networks and social media users showed that some of the spray-painted messages on the logo included “no cops,” “fuck Trump” and “#Love.” CBS 46 in Atlanta reported that though the protest was primarily “peaceful” at the start, one protester threw a brick at the CNN headquarters’ windows and others threw rocks.
Later, protesters threw milk jugs, bricks and water bottles at police cars in front of the headquarters, and at that point, some protesters began running. While CNN’s Nick Valencia and his crew were live on-air with Chris Cuomo, protesters threw some sort of firecracker at the police holding a barricade inside the CNN Center.
The Atlanta Police Department has a precinct inside CNN Center.
A police vehicle and an American flag were set on fire in front of the headquarters, while later WSB-TV in Atlanta reported some protesters were looting a ground-floor restaurant at the CNN Center. The Hollywood Reporter has asked CNN for comment.
Not long after protesters settled in front of the CNN building, CNN journalist Fernando Alfonso III reported that SWAT arrived on the scene in front of the news network’s headquarters. Officers in riot gear also began to disperse protestors from in front of the news organization.
The news comes less than a day after CNN reporter Omar Jimenez and his crew were arrested live on-air while covering protests in Minneapolis over Floyd’s death. “A black reporter from CNN was arrested while legally covering the protests in Minneapolis. A white reporter also on the ground was not,” CNN tweeted about the arrest.
Protests have raged nationwide after Floyd, a black man, died after being detained by Minneapolis police officers Monday. Police Officer Derek Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes while detaining him, including three while Floyd was unresponsive, according to prosecutors in Hennepin County, Minnesota. Viral bystander footage of the incident showed Floyd saying “I can’t breathe.”
On Friday night, protests over Floyd’s death — which has coincided with the shooting death of Breonna Taylor — also took place in Washington, D.C., New York City and Fort Wayne, Indiana, among other locations.
Updated May 29, 6:36 p.m. Protestors reportedly have thrown what appeared to be a firecracker inside the lobby of CNN’s Atlanta headquarters.
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