City to address public ahead of possible protests in Santa Clarita; National Guard expected

Santa Clarita City Hall, as pictured on February, 26, 2020, is located on the 23900 block of Valencia Blvd. Dan Watson/The Signal

The city of Santa Clarita is scheduled to address the community Wednesday afternoon ahead of a possible protest planned for Thursday. 

Mayor Cameron Smyth and Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Capt. Justin Diez are expected to provide an update from City Hall at 4 p.m. following an “emergency City Council meeting,” according to a memo released by the city. 

Their announcement is expected to be broadcast live for the public to tune in, where officials will discuss how the city is preparing for the possibility of a protest in Santa Clarita after rumors have circulated regarding a demonstration and the ongoing nationwide protests, some of which have resulted in looting and rioting, following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. 

Prior to Thursday and the city’s announcement Wednesday, the City Council said Tuesday they hoped for a peaceful demonstration that would stray from looting and rioting akin to that of other cities in Los Angeles County and the nation. 

Although not certain, Councilman Bob Kellar said Wednesday that it was probable Santa Clarita could see the presence of the National Guard. 

“I can’t give you an absolute, but it is my understanding, going back to about four or five days ago, that there was a probability that the National Guard would be here. I am relieved with the preparedness that has been put into place. I don’t mind the protests but we don’t need violence and crime,” he said. 

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