During a Tuesday press conference, Gardner claimed that she would “use the full power of the law” to prosecute individuals who committed violence.
“What happened last night was not about nonviolent protests, what happened was a small group of individuals chose to benefit off of the pain and suffering of our community and use it as an excuse to engage in senseless violence,” the prosecutor said.
“I will continue to uphold the rights to peacefully protest, but I want to be clear, I will use the full power of the law and my officer to prosecute and hold accountable anyone who murders police officers, shoots at police offices or harms anyone in my community.
On early Tuesday morning, a retired St. Louis police captain was killed by looters after protests turned violent.
It came on a violent night in St. Louis, where four officers were shot, officers were pelted with rocks and fireworks, and 55 businesses were burglarized or damaged, including a convenience store that burned.