George Floyd’s May 26 death sparked nationwide protests that spread from Minnesota to California. However, many protests quickly turned violent, leading to loss of life and destruction of property, costing nearly a billion dollars in damage.
A preliminary estimate from the Property Claim Services (PCS), a unit of Verisk Analytics, estimates that the riots caused catastrophic economic damage, putting a lowball estimate of costs anywhere between $500-$900 million in insured losses, while noting that cost is expected to increase making the 2020 string of riots the most costly ever, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Kenosha Business Owners Speak Out After Another Night Of Rioting)
Without an official estimate, the 2020 disturbances are ranked second in most expensive losses, according to the III. The most expensive riots were the 1992 Los Angeles Rodney King riots that resulted in $775 million in insured losses, which when adjusted for 2020 inflation, cost a whopping $1.4 billion, according to III.
More than 250 buildings were looted and damaged in St. Paul and Minneapolis during the George Floyd protests. In Dallas, Texas, numerous businesses were vandalized and looted, with some rioters slashing tires and breaking windows on police vehicles. Los Angeles saw a string of looting, burglary, robbery, vandalism and arson during the protests.
By June 4, more than 50 cities in 23 states had imposed curfews, and the National Guard was called in to at least 30 states and Washington D.C., according to ABC News.