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Madison city leaders address destruction spurring from protest

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MADISON (WKOW) --Madison city leaders held a news conference Sunday morning to talk about the violence and destruction that erupted Saturday afternoon after a protest for Geroge Floyd.

Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway condemned the people who started the riots and escalated the situation in downtown Madison.

"We will not ever be able to say 'all lives matter' until we can say 'black lives matter,'" she said.

She said she appreciates the people who tried to de-escalate the violence and those who came together to clean-up the community.

"Our community is wounded, people are hurting, businesses are harmed," said the mayor as she got choked up. "We must work to heal, but I need everyone to understand that papering over the problems of racism and injustice does not bring healing."

Council President Sheri Carter also spoke at the news conference. She urged people to contact local lawmakers to end the violence and injustice that is happening across the country, including Minneapolis where Geroge Floyd was killed while in police custody.

"When your son goes out, you expect them to come back. that's not true for many African American mothers," said Carter. "George Floyd has to be the last one. We have to go into action."

Police Chief Vic Wahl took the podium to give a rundown of the events that unfolded Saturday afternoon.

"We saw a significant disturbance up and down State Street and really throughout the entire city, over the course of the night we were required to request mutual aid not only from other police agencies in Dane County but from surrounding counties," he said. "It was a number of hours before we had control of the State Street area."

The Madison Police Department has made a request to receive assistance from Wisconsin National Guard should another incident break out. They are waiting to hear back.

Approximately 75 businesses were damages, three people were arrested and one officer was hurt in protests that spanned hours in downtown Madison.

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