Virginia’s governor, Richmond mayor monitoring potential for unrest and protests

Large security fencing remains around Virginia's State Capitol. (NBC12 File image)
Large security fencing remains around Virginia's State Capitol. (NBC12 File image)(NBC12)
Published: Apr. 20, 2021 at 3:52 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Virginia’s governor and Richmond’s mayor are watching and waiting for any potential unrest.

Large security fencing remains around Virginia’s State Capitol. It’s a telling sign that the commonwealth and city are planning for the worse, but hopeful it won’t be needed.

“As far as the City of Richmond, the mayor and I are working very closely together. We’ve been through this before. We have made the necessary preparations to look at if and when that verdict comes out,” Gov. Ralph Northam said.

Over the last two weeks, city leaders have been planning for potential unrest following a verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial.

The death of George Floyd last year sparked a summer of protests in and around Richmond. Businesses along Broad Street in downtown also remain boarded up the week of April 19, some from almost a year ago when those protests first broke out.

“We are prayful that the verdict will come back the right way, that justice will be served, but we have to plan for as if an emergency could happen. We’ll be prepared,” Mayor Levar Stoney said.

Virginia State Police tells NBC12 its officers won’t get involved in any local protests until it is asked for help by local police on the ground.

Meanwhile, Northam says the Virginia National Guard is on standby, as always, but has not been activated or requested ahead of the verdict.

“But we expect Richmond will be peaceful and the commonwealth to be peaceful but we are always prepared for whatever would occur,” the governor said.

NBC12 did reach out to Richmond Police about its planning and preparations. As of this posting, we’ve not heard back.

Copyright 2021 WWBT. All rights reserved.