The Pennsylvania National Guard has been deployed in Philadelphia after a night of rioting Monday.
“At the request of Philadelphia County, the Pennsylvania National Guard is staffing several hundred members in Philadelphia to protect the right to peacefully assemble and protest while keeping people safe,” the Philadelphia National Guard said according to CBS Philadephia. (RELATED: ‘Looting Is Not A Protest, It Is A Crime’: Joe Biden Issues Statement On Philadelphia Police Shooting)
The @PANationalGuard confirms deployment in Philly: “At the request of Philadelphia County, the Pennsylvania National Guard is staffing several hundred members in Philadelphia to protect the right to peacefully assemble and protest while keeping people safe.
— Greg Argos (@GregArgosCBS3) October 27, 2020
“Assisting civil authorities during times of need is one of the core missions of the Guard,” they added. “Members are well-trained and well-prepared to assist the commonwealth and its communities in any way they can.”
The deployment comes after riots erupted in Philadelphia following the police shooting Monday of 27-year-old Walter Wallace Jr. Police say that they responded to a report of a man with a weapon and Wallace was holding a knife when they arrived on the scene. He allegedly ignored calls to drop the weapon before officers opened fire and shot him multiple times. Wallace was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Police spokesperson Sgt. Eric Gripp said that Wallace “advanced towards the officers” and that investigators were reviewing footage of the incident, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported. A video of the shooting circulated on social media and both officers at the scene were wearing body cameras, according to the report.
“He has mental issues,” Walter Wallace Sr., his father, said. “Why you have to gun him down?”
“Why didn’t they use a Taser?” his father asked according to the report. “His mother was trying to defuse the situation.”
Riots began Monday night in Philadelphia following the shooting. Philadelphia police said that 30 officers were injured during the riots, including a 56-year-old female officer who was taken to the hospital with a broken leg after being hit with a pickup truck. The other 29 officers reportedly suffered minor injuries from projectiles, including rocks and bricks, that were thrown at them, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
Rioters set fire to at least one police car, and police arrested at least 30 people, according to the Inquirer. At a police station, the crowd clashed with a line of police in riot gear, throwing objects at them. Businesses were looted and significantly damaged, according to the report.