Society

Black Lives Matter Protesters Force Lockdown Of Mall Of America, Close Airport Terminals

| by Emily Smith
Mall of America Protests.Mall of America Protests.

According to Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton of Minnesota, the moving Black Lives Matter protests have led to disruptions at the Mall of America and at Minnesota’s main airport.

On Dec. 23, Dayton begged protesters to stop blocking access to roads and terminal entrances at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Dayton said he questions the need for this type of demonstration, as the protester’s demands have been met through state and federal investigations of the shooting of Jamar Clark by Minneapolis police on Nov. 15, reports The Blaze.

Protesters have also called for the release of video related to the Clark incident. Dayton hopes to delay revealing the video, as it could potentially jeopardize the integrity of the investigation.  

Airport spokesman Patrick Hogan noted that roads leading to the airport have continued to be backed up and the security checkpoints inside the airport terminal are temporarily closed.

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The checkpoints were closed to prevent protesters from rushing through them and forcing an evacuation, according to Hogan.

It’s possible that there could be flight delays as a result of the protest.

Inside the Mall of America, many stores have closed and several kiosks have shut down -- all during one of the busiest shopping days of the year.

“What do we want? Justice!” protesters shouted. “When do we want it? Now!”

Although the mall originally sought a court order blocking the planned protest, a judge determined that she didn’t have the power to block unidentified protesters associated with Black Lives Matter from showing up. While Bloomington Police Deputy Chief Denis Otterness confirmed that officers would be at the scene, he declined to discuss the specific plans regarding the protest and managing it.

“We’re just not releasing that at this point,” Otterness said. “Our No. 1 priority is the safety of everybody out at the Mall of America today.”

Sources: Reuters via Yahoo News, TheBlaze / Photo credit: Yahoo News