Missouri Gov. Mike Parson declared a state of emergency Saturday due to "civil unrest" and assured local authorities that the state's National Guard and Highway Patrol "stand ready to support local authorities."

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson declared a state of emergency Saturday due to "civil unrest" and assured local authorities that the state's National Guard and Highway Patrol "stand ready to support local authorities."

The declaration came in the middle of a weekend that saw demonstrations in cities across the country, including Springfield, calling for justice for George Floyd, a black man in Minnesota who died Memorial Day after a police officer pressed a knee into his neck as he cried out that he could not breathe.

Parson's executive order acknowledged that many were "peaceful assemblies" across the state.

But he also wrote that "there are other events occurring in the Cities of Kansas City, St. Louis, and surrounding areas" that have caused or may cause trouble local officials can't handle.

Around the same time the governor's office announced the declaration, demonstrators were clashing with police around Kansas City's Country Club Plaza, an upscale shopping district. 

City police deployed both tear gas and pepper spray,according to the Kansas City Star, and a police spokesman accused people in the crowd of breaking the law and causing injuries.

On the other side of the state in Ferguson, the St. Louis suburb where 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed by an officer in 2014, "numerous businesses" and buildings were damaged, including police headquarters,according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

"We are deeply saddened by the tragic death of George Floyd," Parson, a former Polk County sheriff, said in a news release. "We are also saddened by the acts of violence that have transpired across our nation and state in response to this event. At this time, we are taking a proactive approach to protect Missouri and its people."

Parson's order comes in addition to an existing state of emergency declared due to the coronavirus outbreak, which like police violence has affected a disproportionately large number of black people.

That second order is set to expire June 15.