Looters damage businesses in Friendship Heights Sunday night

Looters damage businesses in Friendship Heights Sunday night

Group taunted Montgomery County police

| Published:

Montgomery County police blocked the southbound lanes of Wisconsin Avenue at about midnight in Friendship Heights.

Photo by Steve Hull

Rioters broke into businesses in Friendship Heights along the D.C.-Maryland line Sunday night.

Capt. Sean Gagen, the Montgomery County Police Department’s Second District commander, told Bethesda Beat in a text message that both county and D.C. police officers responded to a group of more than 100 people on the D.C. side around 9 p.m. on Sunday.

Sunday marked the third consecutive day of sometimes violent riots in D.C. and around the country in response to the death of George Floyd, who died after a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee onto Floyd’s neck on May 25 for several minutes.

Some of the protesters on Sunday night tried to break into the Mazza Gallerie shopping mall and, when D.C. police got to the scene, a large group started to run along Western and Military avenues in Northwest Washington, Gagen said. Several people then broke into the CVS pharmacy on Wisconsin Avenue and county police officers tried to break up the crowd.

Images on social media showed prescription drugs from the CVS littering the surrounding sidewalks.

Gagen wrote that because the looting happened in D.C., Montgomery County officers didn’t make any arrests.

Gagen wrote that county police officers positioned themselves along Western Avenue, which runs along the D.C. border, to prevent looters from entering Montgomery County.

D.C. police wrote on Twitter at 10:08 p.m. that there were reports of break-ins at a Target on the 4500 block of Wisconsin Avenue and at Mazza Gallerie. “Several individuals” had been detained, they wrote.

On Saturday night, Saks Fifth Avenue, on the Montgomery County side, was broken into, Gagen said.

Bloomingdales in Friendship Heights boarded up. Photo by Steve Hull.

Several workers who had been boarding up windows at Bloomingdales Sunday afternoon and night told Bethesda Beat early Monday that many of the protesters crossed over Western Avenue into Montgomery County and were taunting county police.

Benny Bush, one of the contractors, said the police did not respond to the taunts. “They were cussing the police,” Bush said. “The cops didn’t say anything.”

Benny Bush, one of the contractors, said Montgomery County police did not respond to the taunts from protesters. Photo by Steve Hull.

Bush said a group of protesters broke a window in Bloomingdales, but quickly crossed into D.C. to avoid Montgomery County police, who were pursuing them. He said D.C. police did not stop the protesters from smashing windows at the Lord & Taylor store on the D.C. side of Western Avenue.

Bush said one of the protesters asked him if he could borrow his hammer. Bush said he refused.

Steve Hull contributed to this report.
Dan Schere can be reached at daniel.schere@bethesdamagazine.com

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