As the Minneapolis riots entered their fourth night, the apparent absence of police and National Guard troops had both the city's mayor and the governor facing tough questions about their response to the crisis.
Walz gave a 1:30 a.m.press conference in which he was furious at the extent of the damage, and took responsibility for "underestimating the wanton destruction and the sheer size of this crowd."
"The absolute chaos — this is not grieving, and this is not making a statement that we fully acknowledge needs to be fixed — this is dangerous. You need to go home."
Walz suggested that "anarchists," predominantly from outside of Minneapolis, are responsibility for the bulk of the damage, also suggesting white supremacists and members of cartels may be involved.
"The sheer number of rioters has made it impossible to make coherent arrests," he said.
"The terrifying thing is that this resembles more a military operation now as you observe ringleaders moving from place to place. There are simply more of them than us."
On the same night, the Pentagon is reportedly putting military police on alert to be sent to Minneapolis if the situation worsens.
Amid the unrest Friday night — in which various buildings around Minneapolis were set ablaze and the police department's 5th Precinct was surrounded by protesters — both Mayor Jacob Frey and Gov. Walz were publicly silent for hours, incurring criticism from fellow politicians, local journalists, commentators and citizens.
Among the buildings set on fire and/or looted were the Wells Fargo bank near the 5th Police Precinct, the Kmart on Nicollet Avenue, and the Family Dollar and O'Reilly Auto Parts stores at 36th and Nicollet.
The situation in Midtown escalated to the point that citizen responders were working to put out some of the fires, such was the spread of the damage that limited emergency response.
The two leaders are also being blasted for the perceived lack of coordination of police and National Guard troops, with the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association calling on Walz to "please support (law enforcement) and take control":
Meanwhile, Mayor Frey faced public calls for answers as to why firefighters had not been deployed to put out flames in areas impacted by the riots:
Frey responded around midnight, saying a "significant increase in personnel" were being sent to the besieged 5th Precinct:
He also gave an interview to MPR, saying that "fire trucks are on their way" with National Guard escorts and adding, "let me emphasize, we need to keep the peace."
Addressing the absence of police in certain areas, Frey went on to compare policing the unrest to "whack-a-mole," in that police can't be everywhere at once.
Walz posted a tweet early Saturday morning, calling on Minnesotans to go home: