WESTWOOD—Mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti announced in a public statement on June 7 that the use of National Guards deployed will be minimized.
Garcetti sent the National Guard in on May 30 at 7:30 p.m. to help control violence that broke out across Los Angeles during protests sparked by the death of George Floyd, a Minneapolis resident who was killed by former officers after being detained for an alleged counterfeit twenty dollar bill. Protests were mainly led by the Black Lives Matter group.
Garcetti said in a press conference on May 31 that the deployment of the guards was due to the protests escalating and in need of containment:
“It was clear to folks it escalated; I listen to the requests from our police officers,” he said. “I had talked to the governor early in the morning. He [Gov. Gavin Newsom] offered and let us know that they could be on standby.”
On June 1, UCLA’s External Vice President, Aidan Arasasingham, sent a letter to Garcetti and Newsom asking for the removal of the guards in Westwood:
“The recent deployment of the National Guard to Los Angeles is a disturbing escalation of militarized police presence in a city that is pained by the legacies of police violence disproportionately affecting Black communities.”
Garcetti’s decision to lessen the force of the National Guard has been stated to be based on protests beginning to be more peaceful. In the release, Garcetti stated he was proud of the city for their efforts:
“I’m proud that our city has been peaceful this week — and that our residents are leading a powerful movement to make Los Angeles more just, equitable, and fair for Black Angelenos, communities of color, and all of our workers, youth, and families.”
A small amount of guards will remain in the county until June 10 for emergency support if needed.