Governor deploys National Guard to Philadelphia in anticipation of another round of violent riots

Governor deploys National Guard to Philadelphia in
anticipation of another round of violent riots 1

PHILADELPHIA, PA – After a night filled with riots that left 30 officers injured and several arrested, the Democratic Governor of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, has activated National Guard troops to try to keep the situation calm in the city of Philadelphia.

The state fully anticipates another violent night after police in Philadelphia shot and killed a black male who was chasing them with a knife.  Lieutenant Colonel Keith Hickox said that the hundreds of guardsman will be assisting with “protecting life, property and the right to peacefully protest.”

He added:

“We are able to conduct operations in support of civil authorities to enhance local law enforcement’s ability to provide continued public safety and critical infrastructure security.”

Randy Gyllenhaal noted:

“At the direction of Governor Wolf, and PEMA, the Pennsylvania National Guard is mobilizing several hundred members in support of the Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management and assist local agencies in protecting life, property and the right to peacefully assemble and protest.

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“Assisting civil authorities during times of need is one of our core missions in the National Guard and our Citizen Soldiers and Airmen are well-trained and well-prepaired to assist our commonwealth and our communities in any way we can.

“We are able to conduct operations in support of civil authorities to enhance local law enforcement’s ability to provide continued public safety and critical infrastructure security.”

Philadelphia Police also noted that they will be increasing police presence throughout the city.  Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said:

“For today and this evening, we anticipate the chance of additional incidents of civil unrest and, as such, we will be taking additional steps to ensure order.” 

Philadelphia Police will station numerous officers at locations that they anticipate will see civil unrest as a result of the officer involved shooting.  Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said:

“We were hoping that we won’t have any repeat of we’ve seen last night and we’re taking every precaution that we can.”

The incident occurred on October 26, 2020, when officers were called about Walter Wallace, Jr and a possible mental breakdown as he was walking in the area armed with a knife. 

At some point after officers arrived, someone shot video footage which showed the officers backing up continually as a man who appeared to be Wallace refused to stop upon orders and kept advancing on officers.

Officers, after retreating for several moments, opened fire, striking Wallace who went down from his injuries.  Police report that they immediately started rendering medical aid and transported him to the hospital where he sadly succumbed to his injuries.

Current Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden and his running mate, Kamala Harris, quickly spread the news that alluded that officers were wrong in their use of force, despite apparently being chased by someone with a knife (according to video).  They said:

“Walter Wallace’s life, like too many others’, was a black life that mattered – to his mother, to his family, to his community, to all of us.  At the same time, no amount of anger at the very real injustices in our society excuses violence. 

“Attacking police officers and vandalizing small businesses, which are struggling during a pandemic, does not bend the moral arc of the universe closer to justice.”

It appears, from statements from the Philadelphia Police Department, that the officers involved were wearing body cameras that should have captured the incident.   When those videos will be released is unknown.

Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said that he hopes that his office will release the video footage soon, but only after he discussed the issue with city leaders and Outlaw.  Krasner did his best to promise the city that his office would remain impartial in their investigation. He said:

“We are not out to cover for anybody.  We are not out to get anybody.”

In the unrest that followed the officer involved shooting, thirty officers were reported injured and several business were damaged in the rampage.  Fox News reports that 10 CVS pharmacies alone suffered damage and that they will all close by 10pm tonight “out of an abundance of caution.”  A spokeswoman for the company said:

“Thankfully, no employees were hurt.  We’re working to repair the damage and will reopen stores as soon as it is safe to do so.”

In case you missed it, here are the details about the overnight riots:

PHILADELPHIA, PA –  More than 30 police officers were injured overnight and a police officer was run over.  Why?  Because cops shot an armed black man.

Police officers fatally shot a 27-year-old black man armed with a knife during a confrontation Monday afternoon in West Philadelphia, an incident that quickly raised tensions in the neighborhood and sparked a standoff that lasted deep into the night.

Ben Crump tweeted:

Philadelphia cops fatally shot Walter Wallace Jr. today firing 10+ times at him while he stood at least 10 ft away. He allegedly had a knife but cops made NO attempts at de-escalating the situation in this video. They went Straight to killing Wallace in front of his loved ones!

The protest started after an officer fatally shot Walter Wallace Jr, a 27-year-old black man armed with a knife on the 6100 block of Locust Street on Monday afternoon.

Wallace’s death prompted protests in West Philadelphia, with demonstrators gathering at Malcolm X Park and then marching to the police station at 55th and Pine Streets for an hours-long standoff.

Andy Ngo tweeted:

“BLM protesters gather in the street in Philadelphia to attack police after a black man who charged at police with a knife was shot dead today. #Blacklivesmatter”

Andy Ngo tweeted: 

“Philadelphia tonight after police shot and killed a black man who charged at them with a knife. It was captured on video. #blacklivesmatter.”

Late Monday into early Tuesday, police struggled to respond to vandalism and looting along the commercial corridor of 52nd Street, which was the scene of clashes between police and protestors earlier this summer.

At least one police vehicle was set on fire Monday night and destroyed, and several police officers were injured by bricks or other objects hurled from the crowd. One officer was hospitalized after getting run over by a speeding truck.

Wallace was an undetermined distance from the officers but a video from a bystander showed he appeared to be multiple feet from them when they fired. The video depicts Wallace walking toward the officers and police backing away. The video then swings briefly out of view, and at that moment police fire at Wallace.

Andy Ngo tweeted: 

“More video of #BlackLivesMatter rioters in Philadelphia attacking police tonight to protest the shooting of a black man who charged at cops with a knife.”

Walter Wallace Sr., the man’s father, said his son appeared to have been shot 10 times. He asked:

“Why didn’t they use a taser? His mother was trying to diffuse the situation.”

Wallace Sr. said his son struggled with mental health issues and was on medication. He continued:

“He has mental issues. Why you have to gun him down?”

Philadelphia Police Sergeant Sgt. Eric Gripp said officers were called to the block and encountered a man who was holding a knife. Officers ordered him to drop the weapon, and he “advanced towards the officers.” Investigators are reviewing footage of what happened. Both officers were wearing body cameras.

Breaking 911 tweeted

“Cops run from rioters in Philadelphia as ATMs are smashed and Businesses looted. Some store owners attempted to protect their stores by linking arms. The crowd remains violent. “

Gripp said:

“Officers ordered him several times to drop the weapon. “He did not do so.” 

Hours after the shooting, heated encounters between police and protesters took place in West Philadelphia near the police precinct at 55th and Pine Streets.

Andy Ngo tweeted:

“BLM rioters on the streets of Philadelphia tonight:”

Mayor Jim Kenney issued a statement Monday night, saying:

“My prayers are with the family and friends of Walter Wallace. I have watched the video of this tragic incident and it presents difficult questions that must be answered. I spoke tonight with Mr. Wallace’s family, and will continue to reach out to hear their concerns firsthand, and to answer their questions to the extent that I am able.”

The mayor also promised a “full investigation.”

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Philadelphia police commissioner Danielle Outlaw also issued a statement:

“Residents have my assurance that those questions will be fully addressed by the investigation. While at the scene this evening, I heard and felt the anger of the community.

Everyone involved will forever be impacted. I will be leaning on what the investigation gleans to answer the many unanswered questions that exist.

I also plan to join the Mayor in meeting with members of the community and members of Mr. Wallace’s family to hear their concerns as soon as it can be scheduled.”

Tarynnaudorff tweeted:


Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner also announced his office’s Special Investigation Unit will be part of the investigation. 

“The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office takes its obligation to try to be fair and to seek evenhanded justice seriously.

The DAO Special Investigation Unit responded to today’s fatal shooting of a civilian by police shortly after it occurred, and has been on the scene with other DAO personnel since that time investigating, as we do jointly with the PPD Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation Unit, in shootings and fatalities by other means involving police.” 

Fraternal Order of Police president John McNesby released a statement defending the officers. 

“Our police officers are being vilified this evening for doing their job and keeping the community safe, after being confronted by a man with a knife. We support and defend these officers, as they too are traumatized by being involved in a fatal shooting.” 

Andy Ngo tweeted:

“Police run away and retreat from a mob of BLM rioters in Philadelphia”

People threw bottles at police as officers with shields pushed back. Several police officers injured by bricks or other objects thrown at them earlier in the night

“Scene on 52nd St:”

“Police cars are speeding through at frightening speeds.”

At 52nd and Chestnut Streets, dozens of police with batons engaged an increasingly angry crowd that vandalized a police SUV.

Elsewhere along 52nd Street, there were reports of broken windows, dumpsters overturned and security cameras being knocked down.

Tensions escalated into the night as protesters continued to march on 52nd Street and the scene turned disorderly.

A cop car was set ablaze at 52nd and Market, while two dumpsters were set on fire at 52nd and Walnut.

Andy Ngo tweeted:

“Video of the police vehicle that was set on fire in Philadelphia by BLM rioters.”

One group smashed in the windows of a backhoe parked on 52nd Street in an attempt to steal the large construction equipment. Fireworks broke out over a dumpster that had been set ablaze.

The crowds along 52nd near Walnut and Locust

Andy Ngo tweeted:

“Mass looting breaks out at clothing and shoe store during tonights BLM riot in Philadelphia.”

In an attempt to regain control of the scene, more than a dozen cops on foot formed a line as they ran down 52nd Street chasing protesters away from the main thoroughfare. Many cops had a baton in hand

A little after 12:30 a.m., more than five hours after protests started in West Philly, police have largely regained control of the 52nd Street corridor.

Shane B. murphy tweeted:


Residents and demonstrators vent their frustration with police officers at the scene of the shooting.

The Police Commissioner is present and is speaking to the crowd that is gathered.

Victim is Walter Wallace Jr, 27.

Credit: Christie Ileto”

The crowds of a few hundred from earlier in the night have mostly dispersed, while a couple of dozen protesters still on the scene were engaging in conversations with police.

Cops with shields blocked off Walnut Street, while police vans blocked off Pine Street.

Andy Ngo tweeted:

“At the Philadelphia BLM riot, a cop got hit or run over by a speeding vehicle.”

A police officer was run over by a speeding black truck around 12:50 p.m. at 52nd and Walnut Streets. This incident was broadcast on a social-media Livestream.

A large group of officers then formed a protective shield around their colleagues as they were hit by rocks.

A few minutes later police said they had stopped a truck that may have been the striking vehicle.

The National Police Association tweeted: 


The protests came roughly four months after the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police sparked widespread demonstrations in Philadelphia and across the country and a national reckoning over racial injustice and police killings of Black people.

This is a developing story and more updates will come as we receive them. 

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