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Video: Washington DC Police Detain Over 40 BLM Protesters Involved in ‘Rioting Behaviors’

© REUTERS / CARLOS BARRIAPolice officers stand guard after a shooting incident outside of the White House, in Washington, US., 10 August 2020.
Police officers stand guard after a shooting incident outside of the White House, in Washington, US., 10 August 2020.  - Sputnik International
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On Thursday night, a Black Lives Matter demonstration took place in the Washington DC neighbourhood of Adams-Morgan, outside of the Third District police station. Protesters told WJLA-TV, an ABC-affiliated TV station in the US capital that they were “marching to let people know they are still here”.

Washington DC Police Department said on Friday they have detained 41 protesters for “engaged in rioting behaviors” that took place on Thursday night, on charges of “Felony Rioting & Assault on Police Officer offences”.

“We facilitate daily peaceful demonstrations in DC. Overnight, intentional fires were set & property destroyed. When this occurs, our members have a responsibility to take action,” the police department said in a statement on Twitter. “At this time, 41 individuals were arrested for Felony Rioting & Assault on Police Officer offences”.

The police stressed that “there is a difference between peaceful protestors & individuals destroying property or setting fires,” insisting they have made arrests “only of those that were engaged” in the rioting activity.

ABC’ affiliate in Washington, WJLA-TV, reported that protesters, affiliated to the Black Lives Matter movement, were “marching to let people know they are still here”, before police surrounded them in DC’s Adams Morgan neighbourhood and made the arrest. Witnesses told the station protesters were pepper sprayed by the law enforcement agents.

The DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department said in a statement on Twitter Friday that its crews handled “several outside fires that were set” by demonstrators on Thursday night. The department said, “There were no structural fires”.

“#DCsBravest worked closely with our partners at @DCPoliceDept to extinguish several outside fires that were set. 2 engine companies and a battalion chief handled these incidents. There were no structural fires,” the DC Fire and EMS tweeted.

WTOP reported that protesters surrounded at least one police officer during the demonstration.

In late-May, the death of an African American man, George Floyd, at the hands of Minneapolis officers triggered nationwide anti-police brutality and anti-racism protests all across the United States, that sometimes turned into violent clashes between law enforcement officers and protesters, seeing acts of vandalism and looting.

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