Rioters had taken over the Sheraton Minneapolis Midtown Hotel and have crowdfunded over $138,000 to turn it into shelter and operations base.
The Antifa militants and rioters claimed that they were given permission by the owner to take over the building after they opted to flee the city and evacuate their property, but they were evicted by the owner on Tuesday following a drug overdose in the building.
On the GoFundMe page, the organizers claim that rioters who were fleeing from police had entered the hotel on Friday, May 29.
“They finally found refuge in a hotel a few blocks away. Throughout the night, people came in with harrowing stories of terror from police and other white supremacists. The National Guard shot rubber bullets at our community members who stood outside to protect the building. So much of our beloved Lake Street burned around us,” the GoFundMe campaign says. “The next morning, we learned that the hotel owners planned to evacuate, but so much of the community was still in need of shelter. With the owner’s gracious support, people stepped forward and created a mutual aid community care system.”
However, the Star Tribune reports that “the hotel owner, Jay Patel, bought it earlier this year and was in the process of rebranding it, according to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal. While volunteers are looking to keep the shelter running permanently, Patel told the Business Journal this week he does not plan to keep it as a shelter for long.”
The group claimed to be sheltering over 200 homeless and displaced people.
On a Facebook page made for the commandeered hotel, the rioters wrote “there is no going back to how things were – this isn’t a hotel anymore, this is a mutual aid community care resource made possible by George Floyd.”
The anarchists now say that they want someone to buy them another hotel.
The Star Tribune reports that “Patel and a team of volunteers had grown increasingly stressed and exhausted accommodating guests, many who were dealing with mental illness and substance use problems, Delaney said. There were about 35 to 40 volunteers staffing the hotel at a time, but many of them were also organizing in other ways following Floyd’s death.”