Following two nights of a citywide curfew, Santa Clara is hoping for a night of peace.
The city has been under an overnight curfew each of the last two evenings – Sunday and Monday nights – to prevent against looting and vandalism.
Late Tuesday, San Jose’s City Council followed suit, voting to lift their curfew effective Thursday morning, June 4.
Protests in San Jose and the West Valley, stemming from last week’s killing of an unarmed African American man, George Floyd, by a Minneapolis Police Officer, have been generally peaceful during daytime hours. Concerns over threats to Westfield Valley Fair, Santana Row, and other commercial centers led Santa Clara and San Jose leaders to issue the overnight curfews on Sunday afternoon.
According to Santa Clara City Manager Deanna Santana, two stores – Walgreens and Skechers – were vandalized in recent days.
“The eminent threat of larger scale looting throughout Santa Clara can now be managed through regular police authority,” Santana said. The city remains in a state of emergency, allowing for quick law enforcement mobilization as needed.
San Jose officials told the Mercury News that the weekend’s violence had been significant.
“This is not normal for San Jose,” San Jose Police Chief Eddie Garcia told the outlet.
Santana’s statement Tuesday afternoon also provided some of the rationale for the recent curfew decision.
“At the time of issuance, there was already observed looting in Santa Clara and credible intelligence of larger scale activity at Westfield Valley Fair and Santana Row shopping districts,” Santana said. “The rapidly changing situation and legitimate threats of looting required immediate action.”
Meanwhile, shelter-in-place orders for the COVID-19 pandemic also remain on the books, with countywide changes for restaurant dining and retail coming Friday, June 5.
This article has been updated to reflect San Jose also lifting its curfew order.