Saying he needs to act because of "lawlessness,'' Gov. Doug Ducey has imposed an 8 p.m. statewide curfew for one week following some rioting and looting in several cities.

The curfew is in effect from 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. Sunday, May 31 through Monday, June 8, unless further extended.

The order bans individuals from "using, sitting, standing, sitting traveling or being present on any public street or in any public place, including for the purpose of travel. It runs through 5 a.m. on Monday, June 8.

But there are broad exceptions, including for people going directly to and from work, attending religious services, trucking and delivery services and caring for a family member, friend or animal.

And there are several large loopholes, including patronizing or operating private businesses and "obtaining food.''

"If you're going to Jack in the Box, you can go out,'' acknowledged gubernatorial press aide Patrick Ptak. He said this is not a loophole for people to use who really want to cause disturbances.

"I don't know if you saw the clips last (Saturday) night,'' Ptak told Capitol Media Services.

"The weren't going to the Jack in the Box,'' he continued. "There was looting, rioting going on around Scottsdale.''

He said the governor's order is designed to "proactively prevent that tonight.''

The move comes amid protests in Arizona and elsewhere against police brutality, sparked most recently by the death of George Floyd who was killed under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer on Monday. The disturbances that started in that city have spread nationwide, including to several Arizona cities.

What appears to have gotten the governor's attention is after Scottsdale police said "millions of damages and theft'' occurred in violence and looting Saturday at the Fashion Square mall and nearby businesses. Police said 12 were arrested.

And 114 were arrested in Phoenix during protests on Saturday.

"This gives law enforcement an additional tool to prevent the lawlessness we have seen here and in cities nationwide,'' Ducey said in the edict he posted on Twitter.

"Police will be equipped to make arrests of individuals who are planning to riot, loot or cause damage and unrest,'' he continued. The governor also said that he has authorized "an expanded National Guard mobilization to protect life and property throughout the state.''

The governor said he was acting "at the request of local leaders and in coordination with state and local law enforcement.''

But Nate Sigal, aide to Tucson Mayor Regina Romero, said there had been "no contact'' between the governor and either her or the police chief.

"The governor did call the chief yesterday (Saturday) morning,'' Sigal said. "My understanding is that call was sort of a general check-in

And the Arizona Republic reported that Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego was not among those who requested the curfew, quoting aide Annie DeGraw.

"We have not spoken to or heard from the governor on this or any other topic in a number of months,'' DeGraw said.

Ptak said that's not true.

"We talked with mayors, including of our largest cities,'' he said. "This is action that was supported throughout those conversations, including whether it would happen statewide or at the local level.''

In a statement prior to imposing a curfew, Ducey called the death of Floyd "tragic and abhorrent.''

"It should be condemned by leaders at all levels,'' he said. "And we should listen to those who seek to have a civil dialog on how to ensure it never happens again.''

He said Arizona will listen, saying that DPS Col. Heston Silbert demonstrated "leadership'' in dealing with protesters Thursday night at the Capitol.

The governor had hinted at moving in this direction with earlier statements.

"The looting and violence we saw last night, especially in Scottsdale, simply cannot be tolerated,'' he said.

"And it won't be,'' he continued. "Destruction of property does not qualify as freedom of expression.''

His new order, issued Sunday, puts those words into action, starting with the curfew.

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(1) comment

AP Winter

No thanks. Will be ignoring this order from ole Doug.

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