SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – It cost nearly $25 million for California to deploy 8,000 National Guard soldiers to assist police during recent protests over the death of George Floyd. More than $18 million of that was spent in Los Angeles County, where the Guard deployed 5,500 troops. Most protests were peaceful but some cities had damage as people smashed windows and stole from businesses. A letter from the Department of Finance to state lawmakers on Thursday said the deployment was necessary to mitigate civil unrest. Critics called it a “gross waste of money” that would have been better spent on health care or education.