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SLC Mayor Erin Mendenhall thanks police for help during protests

A police car was overturned during a protest that turned violent in SLC on Saturday. (Photo credit: KSL5 TV)

SALT LAKE CITY — Protests against the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis Police officer went from peaceful to violent in Salt Lake City on Saturday

SLC Mayor Erin Mendenhall is now thanking police from departments across northern Utah for their help during the protests.

In a letter to Riverton Police, Mendenhall said, “I have heard the insults hurled at [police] and seen the violence directed at them while they strive to serve and protect, and it breaks my heart.” 

Riverton Police Chief Don Hutson also appreciated getting a call from Mendenhall thanking his department. 

“This was a unique circumstance and really got out of control quickly, to the point where it was a requirement for a bunch of officers from a lot of different jurisdictions to come to the aid of the Salt Lake City Police Department. It was obvious she was appreciative of that,” Chief Hutson said. 

RELATED: Protesters gather peacefully, two days after violence in SLC

An officer from Riverton was taken to the hospital after he was hit by a rock on Saturday. 

“As a matter of fact, she wanted to reach out to the officer that works for the Riverton Police Department and was injured and wanted to give a personal phone call to him. I know he appreciates that as well,” Chief Hutson said. 

Some police officers had been upset with SLC Mayor Mendenhall after she released a video explaining that people could report misbehavior by law enforcement. 

In her letter, Mendenhall reiterated her support for transparency in policing, something Chief Hutson said he supports as well. 

Riverton Mayor Trent Staggs also appreciated the call and letter, the latter of which he posted to his Facebook page. 

“At the end of the day, this was one community helping another. As Mayor Mendenhall put in the letter, I’m sure if the situation was reversed, and Riverton was in need of aid, that aid would be forthcoming from Salt Lake City,” Staggs said.