The National Guard is withdrawing from the Los Angeles area — even as thousands of largely peaceful protests continue across Southern California over the death of George Floyd, according to a report on Sunday.
The pullout could be completed by later Sunday, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing sources — but another source told the paper that a small number would stay behind to protect some key sites.
Mayor Eric Garcetti called in the Guard on May 30 after initially peaceful protests devolved into looting, vandalism and arson in several locations that police blamed on people not linked to the rallies.
Thousands of people have been arrested, many for curfew violations. Since then, the instances of criminal behavior have dropped significantly.
The curfews were called off last Thursday after the American Civil Liberties Union sued Los Angeles and the county, claiming they violated people’s constitutional rights to free expression.
There were more than 1,000 Guard members in the Los Angeles area, the report said — a presence not seen since the 1992 riots after four police officers were acquitted in the beating of black motorist Rodney King.
President Trump said on Sunday that he would also begin withdrawing the National Guard from Washington, DC.
“I have just given an order for our National Guard to start the process of withdrawing from Washington, D.C., now that everything is under perfect control. They will be going home, but can quickly return, if needed. Far fewer protesters showed up last night than anticipated!,” he posted on Twitter