Ferguson mayor used his experience to help prepare Minnesota officials for this scenario

Maria Keena
May 29, 2020 - 9:40 am
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FERGUSON, Mo. (KMOX) - Ferguson Mayor James Knowles tells KMOX, what you're seeing in Minnesota is pure frustration, playing out on the streets. And people seeing the incident clearly on a video, in broad daylight,  can see the death of George Floyd was a horrific incident.

Knowles says it's not only for this incident, but others that have occurred around the country, multiple times before. Ironically, two years ago, Knowles participated in a preparedness drill for this exact type of situation.

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Knowles was asked if anyone from Minnesota has reached out to him for advice and he says the current administration has not, but adds, "certainly they've been on my mind and in my prayers. I can tell you even if they did call, the playbook is difficult because it is such a fluid situation."

"It's very difficult to determine what you're going to do because you find yourself in this quagmire of trying to both not escalate, or heighten tensions, while also preserving the peace and protecting the public." Knowles says "It becomes a continual back and forth, it's almost impossible to stop. One side, is going to have to figure out, they're going to have to stop. As you see, there's no sign of that currently."

Knowles believes the key to restoring calm is to talk with protesters, clergy and community members.

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