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Cleveland Protestors Pepper Spray Café Patrons

© REUTERS / Aaron JosefczykProtesters walk outside the Justice Center following the not guilty verdict for Cleveland police officer Michael Brelo on manslaughter charges in Cleveland, Ohio, May 23, 2015
Protesters walk outside the Justice Center following the not guilty verdict for Cleveland police officer Michael Brelo on manslaughter charges in Cleveland, Ohio, May 23, 2015 - Sputnik International
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Bystanders sitting at an outdoor café became pepper spray targets as protests turned violent following the acquittal of a Cleveland Police officer, who was charged in the deaths of two unarmed suspects.

One protestor also threw a restaurant sign at a patron and struck him in the head.

The car driven by Timothy Russell is shown Friday, April 10, 2015, in Cleveland. Cleveland police officer Michael Brelo, 31, was found not guilty of voluntary manslaughter in the November 2012 deaths of Russell, 43, and Malissa Williams, 30, after a high-speed chase. - Sputnik International
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The Saturday morning verdict was met with mostly peaceful protests before demonstrations turned increasingly aggressive during the night. Since then, at least 71 people have been arrested, according to Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams.

During a Sunday press conference, Mayor Frank Jackson thanked protestors who remained peaceful and expressed that the city will continue defending their First Amendment rights, but it will not tolerate those who engage in violence.

Police say that by Saturday night, many protestors remained unruly but did not resort to the kind of actions seen recently following police killings in Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri.

Brelo, who is at the center of recent violence in Cleveland, faces administrative charges and remains suspended without pay.

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