A FLORIDA sheriff has "highly recommended" that locals shoot looters if they break into their homes.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd urged Florida residents to protect themselves and stressed the importance of the country's Second Amendment-rights during a Monday press conference.
In a video posted to the department's Facebook page, Sheriff Judd warned: “If you value your life, they probably shouldn’t do that in Polk County. Because the people of Polk County like guns.
"And if you try to break into their homes to steal, to set fires, I’m highly recommending they blow you back out of the house with their guns. So, leave the community alone."
His statement came as unrest, violence and looting have broken out all over the United States in wake of George Floyd's death during his arrest.
Despite his harsh warning, he still supported peaceful protests.
Judd added: “For those who want to come in, stealthily, among those wonderful people who are simply making their position known, the ones that tried to infiltrate, we are going to hunt you down and lock you up if you engage in any criminal conduct."
Police in St Petersburg, Florida, arrested 14 people who allegedly attacked officers with rocks, water bottles — and a water meter cover, as Florida Gov Ron DeSantis activated the National Guard on Sunday afternoon.
Along with the video, the Facebook post read: "My heart is full with gratitude for our community today Monday night we had zero incidents of protest-related violence."
"There were three protests in Polk County—all were peaceful—there was no sign of outside agitators."
Protests over the weekend had been taken over by widespread violence and looting across multiple US cities.
Trump on Monday called himself the “president of law and order” and threatened military action against US citizens if local authorities didn’t use more force on protesters.
The president also made a controversial statement on the Minneapolis protests where he said "when the looting starts, the shooting starts", insisting his statement is "fact."
His tweet had been flagged by Twitter for "glorifying violence," and echoed language used by the Miami police chief accused of "setting up the first fascist state" in the 1960s.
Meanwhile, the Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department was forced to apologize for saying that looters are equally to blame for George Floyd's death as the four Minneapolis police officers involved.
Speaking at a press conference Monday afternoon, LAPD Chief Michel Moore ignited anger after saying the Minnesota native's controversial death was on the "hands" of looters.
Moore's apology followed a Monday press conference, when he said: “We didn’t have people mourning the death of this man, George Floyd, we had people capitalizing.
“His death is on their hands as much as it is those officers.”
George Floyd died on May 25 after getting arrested for apparently trying to use a fake $20 bill to buy cigarettes.
While in police custody, former Minneapolis cop Derek Chauvin held his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes — while Floyd repeatedly said he couldn't breathe.
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He soon died, and his death was determined on Monday to be a homicide following a second, independent autopsy.
Chauvin on Friday was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd's death.
He has been transferred to a maximum-security prison for inmates after it was reported he was "effectively on suicide watch."