AUSTIN (CBSDFW.COM) – Governor Greg Abbott is warning people who come from other states to cause trouble during protests in Texas over last week’s death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis Police custody.
Gov. Abbott, along with all four United States Attorneys in Texas, announced Monday, people who come to Texas from out of state “to engage in looting, violence or other destructive acts in violation of federal law will be subject to federal prosecution.”
Anyone who is arrested and charged with such crimes will be transferred to federal custody, the Governor’s Office said in a news release.
The United States Attorneys will be working with local prosecutors and law enforcement officials to aggressively identify crimes that violate federal law.
“Texans must be able to exercise their First Amendment rights without fear of having agitators, including those coming from out-of-state, hijack their peaceful protest,” said Governor Abbott and the U.S. Attorneys. “Today’s announcement will ensure there are harsh consequences for those breaking the law and that they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
Protests got out of hand in downtown Dallas Friday and Saturday night with people vandalizing buildings, breaking windows and throwing rocks at police. Dozens of people were arrested.