A series of protests were staged across the City Of Angels as a result of the brutal police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week. While the protests were planned as peaceful displays of solidarity with the black community, that peace didn’t last long.
At some point yesterday afternoon the destruction erupted and went on through the night. Random people pulled up in vehicles and took ATM machines, smashed windows of small and locally owned businesses, and left a path of destruction worth tens of millions of dollars in damage.
I walked Melrose this morning to see first hand what had unfolded the night before while I was safely locked away in my apartment. What I saw broke my heart.
Glass store fronts had been smashed out of bicycle shops, jewelry stores, small clothing lines, shoe stores, beauty salons, ceramics stores, barbershops, record stores, a music studio and multiple restaurants. Many of the stores had been robbed and the remaining items inside destroyed. At least 3 buildings were burned. Even a local donut shop had been smashed to bits and looters had littered the ground with cases of donuts.
Today would have been the second day that businesses could open up to the public after three and a half months of closure. Unfortunately owners- black, white and brown- were at their stores cleaning debris, removing graffiti and sorting through the wreckage and remains of their livelihoods. Some had tear-stained faces, others were stoic. All were silent. Small businesses, already devastated by the pandemic, had taken another huge blow but this time at the hand of their fellow man.
Click below to take a photo tour of the Fairfax District on Melrose Avenue for yourself.
Beware: some of the images are graphic and intended for mature audiences only.