Abbott promises federal prosecution for out-of-state agitators amid George Floyd protests

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AUSTIN, Texas – Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said people who don’t live in the state but come here to incite violence during protests will face federal prosecution.

Nearly every major city in Texas has seen people take to the streets and decry the Memorial Day death of Houston native George Floyd while he was being detained by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

While most of the protests have been peaceful, some of them have ended in riots and looting. Officials in Minneapolis, where most of the riots have been located, said one-fifth of people who were arrested there have been from outside the state.

On Monday, Abbott said in a written statement that he has partnered with four U.S. Attorneys in Texas to ensure federal charges if it is found someone came “from out of state to engage in looting, violence or other destructive acts in violation of federal law.”

“Anyone who is arrested and charged with such offenses will be transferred to federal custody,” Abbott said in the statement.

It was not immediately clear if anyone arrested during protests in Texas was from outside the state.

About the Author:

Aaron Barker has been a senior digital editor at KPRC 2 since 2016. As a meteorologist, he specializes in stories about the weather. He has covered Hurricane Harvey, the Astros first World Series win, the Santa Fe High School shooting, the ITC fire and Tropical Storm Imelda.