Businesses in Minnesota's three most populous counties scrambled Monday to shutter their stores, beef up security and send workers home early after Gov. Tim Walz established a curfew to try to avoid a second night of unrest following a fatal police shooting on Sunday.
The curfew will begin Monday at 7 p.m. and end at 6 a.m. Tuesday in Ramsey, Hennepin and Anoka counties. Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter declared states of emergency in both cities.
After Walz announced the curfew at 2 p.m., many businesses decided to close at 6 to give employees time to get home.
The lockdown comes after a Brooklyn Center police officer fatally shot Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, during a traffic stop Sunday afternoon, inflaming already raw tensions between police and community members in the midst of the Derek Chauvin trial.
Amid peaceful protests, stores were looted and damaged in the suburb just north of downtown Minneapolis.
The unidentified officer is on administrative leave after what the chief called an "accidental discharge" in which the officer used a firearm instead of a Taser.
Mike Frattallone, owner of Frattallone's Ace Hardware stores throughout the Twin Cities, said that he is closing all 22 locations companywide at 6 p.m. Monday. Normally the stores would be open until 9 p.m. with a few exceptions.
"The employees will probably be out by 6:02 so everyone can get home," he said. "We plan to be open normal hours tomorrow, but we'll play that by ear."
The Mall of America in Bloomington closed early at 6 p.m. today, with executives saying they will update operations tomorrow morning.
"As is always the case, the safety and security of our guests, team members and tenants remains our top priority," a spokeswoman said in a statement.
Minneapolis-based Target also said it would close stores early.
"Like many businesses in the Twin Cities, we're taking precautionary steps to ensure safety at our stores, including closing some locations early tonight in accordance with local curfews," the company said in a statement. "We'll continue to monitor events closely and make decisions accordingly."
Cub Foods stores in the metro area are closing at 7 and will reopen at 6 a.m.
Lunds & Byerlys stores in Hennepin, Ramsey and Anoka counties will close at 7 p.m. Monday. Lunds & Byerlys stores in St. Cloud, Burnsville, Prior Lake, Eagan, Chanhassen and Woodbury will remain open normal hours. All Lunds & Byerlys stores plan to open at 6 a.m. Tuesday, spokeswoman Katie Tomsche said in an e-mail.
During the curfew, travel is prohibited on public streets and in other public places, with a few exceptions.
The curfew prohibits people from traveling on any street or in any public place. Emergency responders and the media are exempt from the curfew, as are those traveling directly to and from work, seeking emergency care, fleeing dangerous circumstances or experiencing homelessness are exempted.
As the holy month of Ramadan begins, the curfew has been modified to allow anyone traveling to prayer, such as the Tarawih, which begins at 8:30 p.m. Monday.
Frey said that community groups partnering with the city of Minneapolis will also be exempt from the curfew and patrol streets trying to calm conflicts before they escalate into violence.
As well, flights in and out of Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport will not be affected and buses and trains to and from the airport will operate Monday night.
Airport officials advise passengers driving to or from MSP have their boarding passes readily available if they are stopped by police for being out past 7 p.m.
Some concessions at the airport closed early Monday evening so workers could get home before curfew begins, but others will remain open to serve customers.
Staff writers Kavita Kumar and Kristen Leigh Painter contributed to this story.