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River Park Stores Brace for Riot, Hoax or Not

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Sierra Glass Co. was placing boards at the Nordstrom Rack at the Villagio Shopping Center — the first stop on a busy Tuesday.

“They’ve been blowing us up,” David Turner said of the calls his company received.

He said he had four jobs in total for the day.

After social media rumors posts called for a violent protest at 4 p.m. today at River Park, many stores took precautions. Social media reposted an image of notes from an iPhone to take action after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

Groups like the NAACP Fresno State chapter denounced anyone calling for violence in the name of Black Lives Matter. They said the original message, posted on Reddit, was an alt-right fake designed to incite civil unrest.

Workers from Sierra Glass Co. prepared Nordstrom Rack with boards on Tuesday morning. (GV Wire/David Taub)

River Park Getting Ready

“Tenants are afraid that it’s real. We just have to be prepared today.”Tracy Kashian, River Park spokeswoman

Tracy Kashian, spokeswoman for River Park, wasn’t willing to take a gamble that the post was a hoax.

We can’t take the chance that it’s not. Obviously, tenants are afraid that it’s real. We just have to be prepared today,” Kashian said.

Kashian said extra police and security guards will be posted in and around River Park.

“The tenants are deciding (to stay open or close) on their own. It’s nothing we’re requiring or asking them to do,” Kashian said. “They’re deciding if they want to barricade, to be prepared in case something happens.”

Several businesses had either boarded up their stores or were in the process on Tuesday morning.

Around noon, it was mainly quiet in the north side of River Park. Tilly’s was placing wooden boards across its storefront. Pink’s and Victoria’s Secret were already covered up.

On the end, Target remained open. Lines formed out the door at Best Buy.

“It’s sad. (Stores) just open their doors after COVID-19, and they were just starting to get a little bit back into the groove,” Kashian said.

Workers place boards at Tilly’s in River Park. (GV Wire/David Taub)

Standing With Law Enforcement

At 3 p.m., the community is invited to stand with law enforcement against violence at the Edwards Theater in River Park.

“This is not a planned press conference but will be a community outreach with the hope for peace and growth in our community,” the Fresno Police Department wrote on its Facebook page.

Facebook image of Fresno Police Department's Stand Against Violence on Tuesday, June 2, 2020

(Facebook/Fresno Police Department)

David Taub has spent most of his career in journalism behind the scenes working as a TV assignment editor and radio producer. For more than a decade, he has worked in the Fresno market with such stops at KSEE-24, KMJ and Power Talk 96.7. Taub also worked the production and support side of some of TV sports biggest events including the Super Bowl, the NBA Finals and NASCAR to name a few. Taub graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email