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Photos: A weekend of reopening in DC ends in chaos

Protests, property destruction cast a pall over phase one reopening

Protesters and Washington, D.C., police in riot gear face off near the White House on Sunday evening.
Protesters and Washington, D.C., police in riot gear face off near the White House on Sunday evening. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

What a difference a few hours makes.

On Friday, Washington started to emerge from the COVID-19 restrictions placed on nonessential business. Restaurants were allowed to reopen with socially distanced outdoor seating, and residents were finally able to get much needed haircuts. By Friday night, protests surrounding the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police cast a shadow over what many saw as a light at the end of a long tunnel.

And following the violence of Sunday night’s protests outside the White House, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser instituted a 7 p.m. curfew in the district. CQ Roll Call photojournalists were out all weekend to cover the dramatic turns of events.

Lita Griffin gets her hair cut by Raheem Austin on Friday, the first day of the phase one reopening of Washington, D.C., at Mason’s Barber Shop on H Street Northeast. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
James Wedekind and his wife, Jessica, of Springfield, Va., sit with their children at Dacha Beer Garden in the Shaw neighborhood of Washington on Friday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Head bartender Sean Hughes cleans a table Saturday morning at the King Street Oyster Bar restaurant in Washington’s NOMA neighborhood as it prepares to open for outdoor dining. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
A jogger wearing a face mask runs past window displays of President Donald Trump and Michael Jackson at Madame Tussauds wax museum in Washington on Saturday morning. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Protesters rally at the Capitol Reflecting Pool on Saturday after their march calling for justice for George Floyd. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
A woman runs through a looted T-Mobile store near the White House as protests turned from peaceful to destructive Saturday night. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)
Police in riot gear line Lafayette Square in front of the White House on Sunday afternoon as demonstrators gather to protest the death of George Floyd. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)
D.C. Police react to demonstrators in the streets of Washington near the White House on Sunday evening. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)
Tensions rise Sunday evening as D.C. police and protesters face off in Washington on Sunday. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)
As the 11 p.m. curfew neared Sunday, fires were set on H Street in front of the White House as the protests erupted into violence, leading to property destruction in Washington. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
A black protester attempts to put out fires with a fire extinguisher at the Sofitel Hotel near the White House on Sunday night. D.C. police moved in minutes later to clear the area to allow the Fire Department in to douse multiple fires in the area. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
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Photos of the week ending December 8, 2023