A “small” group of protesters showed up at the Sandy Springs Police headquarters May 30 as a second night of George Floyd protests began, leading the city to advise residents to “stay at home.”

“We had a small number at police headquarters — no issues and they have left,” said city spokesperson Sharon Kraun. Police headquarters is the Morgan Falls office park at 7840 Roswell Road in the city’s North End.

Sandy Springs Police officers gather in the parking lot of the Target store in the Prado shopping center on the evening of May 30 as a night of protests began. (John Ruch)

On social media, the city said: “Due to the group of protestors gathering in various areas throughout the metro area, including Sandy Springs, we are asking our residents to stay safe – stay at home.”

The warning came after nationwide protests and riots on May 29 and into the early morning of May 30 about the death of George. Atlanta saw significant damage from looting and arson downtown and in Buckhead.

As the evening of May 30 began, major gathering spots in Sandy Springs, including its central City Green park, did not appear to have any protesters and were being enjoyed by members of the public. Also seemingly normal was Perimeter Mall in nearby Dunwoody, where 150 to 200 vehicles showed up in the early morning hours of May 30, while riots continued in Buckhead, until “escorted” away by police.

However, there was one sign of preparations for unrest in Sandy Springs. At least five police officers with patrol cars were gathered in the parking lot of the Target store in the Prado shopping center on Roswell Road. The looting of a Target featured prominently in news coverage of protests in Minnesota, and a Target was among the stores looted the previous night in Buckhead.

John Ruch is an Atlanta-based journalist. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.