Fears among retailers and brands that protests in Los Angeles over the death of George Floyd would devolve into looting have been realized in some areas.
On Saturday evening, an Alexander McQueen store on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills was broken into and looted, according to live video aired by a local CBS station. Dozens of mainly young men streamed into the McQueen store after the glass of its doorway was broken. A large display window was tagged with “Make America Pay.” The store had not been boarded up like most of its neighbors had earlier in the day. Some that entered the store ran out with handfuls of merchandise and handbags.
Not long before, the Gucci store on rodeo was tagged with “Eat the rich” and protestors attempted to breach its blue plywood barricade, but left when police approached. Dozens of police, many in riot gear, have been present in and around Rodeo since early afternoon as protests in L.A. began to grow and move west from the Fairfax/Grove area of L.A.. The police did not attempt to stop the looting of the McQueen store.
As of 6:30 p.m., the CBS station was showing video of a Nordstrom department store within The Grove shopping center had seen its rear entrance broken into. It was unclear if looting was taking place, but a number of people could be seen walking into the closed store.
The Marc Jacobs on Melrose Ave. had also been breached by this time, with its glass door shattered. The store had not barricaded its windows, but from video on social media it appears the store has been cleared of any available merchandise. Unbroken glass on the store’s window read “F*** capitalism.” The large placard reading Marc Jacobs at the entrance had the names George Floyd and Sandra Bland added to it. Floyd was killed Monday by a police officer while being arrested in Minneapolis for a nonviolent crime, sparking the current wave of protests in the U.S. Bland was found hanged in a jail cell in Texas in 2015 after being detained by police during a traffic stop.
Shortly before 7 p.m. L.A. instituted a city-wide curfew of 8 p.m. as the protests became increasingly chaotic. Shortly before, the gathering in front of The Grove was officially deemed unlawful by police, leading to a number of arrests.
“This is no longer protest, this is destruction,” L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti said on Saturday night. But the curfew is unlikely to deter many people and protestors, thousands of which were still out on the streets of L.A. as 8 p.m. approached.
This is the third night of protesting in L.A., which have been predominately peaceful. Other cities across the U.S. are seeing protests as well, including Seattle, Portland, Nashville, Atlanta, Tampa, Brooklyn and Minneapolis, the city where George Floyd was killed.
This story is being updated.