A Black Lives Matter protest in Los Angeles turned violent Wednesday as demonstrators blocked a major highway and at one point attacked police cars.
The Los Angeles protest, which coincided with protests in Minnesota over the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis, began around 4 p.m. Wednesday in downtown Los Angeles.
The demonstration was organized by Black Lives Matter’s Los Angeles chapter, the Los Angeles Daily News reported.
KTTV reported hundreds of people joined the protest, which eventually turned violent when some protesters took out their anger on law enforcement.
At one point, the protest stretched across the 101 freeway, blocking traffic near the city’s downtown area.
Protesters, most wearing masks, shut down the 101 Freeway tonight near downtown LA to protest the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, who died after a police officer stood on his neck while detaining him pic.twitter.com/rgI36eXOys
— LAist (@LAist) May 28, 2020
— Chase Cain (@ChaseCainNBC) May 28, 2020
Footage of the Los Angeles demonstrators blocking traffic showed some of the protesters attacking police cruisers in broad daylight.
In the video, a police cruiser pulled up to the protest, only for the car to be surrounded and damaged.
One man was seen smashing the back window with a looks like a skateboard, while another man climbed onto the car’s hood.
— Liz Habib (@LizHabib) May 28, 2020
Others kicked and punched the car.
The man on the hood was thrown to the ground when the officer driving decided to maneuver away from the angry crowd.
Another police cruiser then pulled over next to the man who was thrown from the first cruiser, but the officer driving also decided to leave the vicinity of the protest when angry demonstrators surrounded that car as well.
Both cruisers ended up with broken back windows and other damage.
KTTV reported the man who jumped on the hood of the first police car is the only known injury from the protest, and his condition was unknown.
It was not clear as of Thursday whether anyone had been arrested during the protest.
The demonstration had moved off the highway and back onto a city intersection by around 7 p.m. local time Wednesday.
One one point, protesters were seen setting fire to an upside down American flag.
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) May 28, 2020
Protesters also defaced the Los Angeles Police Department headquarters with spray paint.
BREAKING: Protesters have now arrived at LAPD headquarters where they have tagged the building with graffiti. Hundreds of officers here now in crowd control gear trying to restore order. @FOXLA pic.twitter.com/EaMbeH59jm
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) May 28, 2020
Meanwhile, angry crowds nearly 2,000 miles away in Minneapolis also lashed out at police Wednesday amid a protest over the death of Floyd.
But those protests took a darker turn as some people turned to looting retail stores and setting fires in the city.
WARNING: The following video contains vulgar language that some viewers may find offensive.
LATEST: AutoZone in Minneapolis set ablaze by rioters; several other stores looted as police stand down pic.twitter.com/E4h8vH90hI
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) May 28, 2020
Videos on social media showed a Target location being looted and vandalized.
Whoever thinks looting is cool,
This will not bring George Floyd back. Target isn’t owned by the officer that killed him. You’re hurting low income employees who may be fired if Target decides this location is too risky. You took the focus off George. pic.twitter.com/jslts8CjXx
— Robby Starbuck (@robbystarbuck) May 28, 2020
LAPD Chief Michel Moore posted a statement about the death of Floyd to Twitter on Wednesday night.
He described the incident as “sobering,” while also saying that his department is working to gain the trust of citizens in Los Angeles.
— Chief Michel Moore (@LAPDChiefMoore) May 28, 2020
“The actions I watched in the video were incredibly disturbing and go against the basic law enforcement principle of preservation of life,” Moore said.
“Knowing that we have experienced our own high-profile incidents here in Los Angeles, I can assure you the LAPD strives each day to build trust and these events are sobering reminders of how quickly that can be lost.”
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