FRANKFORT, Ky. (WAVE) - Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear announced Saturday morning that he has called the Kentucky National Guard to Louisville.
Following two straight nights of violent protests marked by injuries, arrests and dozens of instances of smashed-out storefront windows in downtown Louisville, Beshear said he had to take the “tough step” to call in the Guard.
Below is his full statement on the matter:
“The death of Breonna Taylor is tragic, and it has led to an outpouring of emotions of frustration, of fatigue and of the belief by many of our Kentuckians that justice isn’t available to all of us in our state and in our society. While I can never pretend to understand the depths of those feelings, what I can do is pledge to listen and to do everything I can to help moving forward.
“The demonstrations in Louisville have all started peacefully, but what we have seen, especially last night, and what our intelligence says is going to happen are outside groups moving in, trying to create violence to harm everybody who is on those streets. We cannot let Breonna’s legacy be marred by violence, and we can’t let our streets turn violent.
“So today, I’m taking a step to insure the safety of everybody by calling up the National Guard to help keep peace in Louisville. I hope everybody knows this is a big step and a tough step, and it’s not one intended to silence any voice, because I want to hear. But I want to make sure at the end of the day that we are all safe.”
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer has announced a dusk-till-dawn curfew beginning Saturday evening, welcoming protesters to hit the streets peacefully during the daytime.