Breaking down the timeline of Saturday evening’s Roanoke protests

What started at Walmart eventually ended outside the Roanoke Police Department building

ROANOKE, Va. – On Saturday, two different groups protested in Roanoke.

One, started at 3 p.m. in Washington Park and remained peaceful.

The other, began at about 7 p.m. on Saturday at the Valley View Walmart.

The store had an emergency early shutdown around that same time and there was damage done to a window there.

Then, the group walked to the nearby Target, which also had an emergency shutdown.

There, one person was arrested.

Roanoke Police Chief Sam Roman and Mayor Sherman Lea were also there.

This is what the mayor’s message to protestors.

“We want to make sure it doesn’t get out of hand and we think things got ugly at Walmart and we’re going to keep working and bringing in support,” said Lea.

From there, protesters drove to Burlington on Hershberger Road and then went to the Sheetz across from the Berglund Center.

While there, protesters chanted, “hands up don’t shoot”

Private security tried to keep peace and protesters left there at about 10 p.m.

The group then moved into downtown where they spent four hours protesting.

Police allowed them to protest throughout streets as long as they were peaceful.

At that time, police were protecting their station downtown, the courthouse and the jail.

The protest ended when someone hurled a firework at officers and the gathering was declared an unlawful assembly.

During protests early on May 31, 2020, someone threw a firework at police officers. That's when officers deemed the gathering as an unlawful assembly.

About the Author:

Megan Woods is thrilled to be back home and reporting at Local 4. She joined the team in September 2021. Before returning to Michigan, Megan reported at stations across the country including Northern Michigan, Southwest Louisiana and a sister station in Southwest Virginia.