WASHINGTON, May 29 (Sputnik) - Minnesota Governor Tim Walz said during a press conference on Friday that he expects swift and fair justice in the case of George Floyd, an African-American resident who died earlier this week after an encounter with police.
"It is my expectation that justice for officers involved in this will be swift, that it will come in a timely manner, that it will be fair," Walz said. "I am confident that those very things I just said will happen."
Public unrest erupted in the cities of Minneapolis, St. Paul and other surrounding communities on Tuesday in the wake of Floyd's death.
A video that spread online shows a white police officer, Derek Chauvin, pinning Floyd to the ground with his knee on his neck for several minutes. Floyd repeatedly tells the police officer that he cannot breathe until becoming unresponsive. Floyd died at a local hospital shortly thereafter.
US media reported on Friday that Chauvin was taken into custody.
More than 500 National Guardsmen have deployed to the area to help local authorities restore order after demonstrations escalated in the last several days. On Thursday evening, rioters in Minneapolis set on fire the police precinct where the four arresting officers worked as well as numerous buildings and businesses.
A state official said during the press conference that arrests have been made for burglary and arson, but did not have an exact number.
Walz added that President Donald Trump's threat that National Guardsmen will shoot demonstrators conducting criminal acts is unhelpful, adding that there is a way to address the situation without inflaming tensions.
Moreover, Walz apologized for the arrest of a CNN television crew early Friday morning that was covering the protest. The crew was live on air when state police took them into custody but released them shortly after confirming their credentials.
Walz said state and municipal officials will have a plan prepared by Friday afternoon to restore order in the affected cities.