21 Twin Cities Officers Hurt, More Than 100 Protesters Arrested
St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) -The Saint Paul Police Department is reporting that 21 law enforcement officers suffered injuries and more than 100 people were arrested after violence broke out during protests over a fatal police shooting in the Twin Cities last week.
Officials indicated 50 people were taken into custody on third-degree riot charges after demonstrators marched from the Governor’s mansion onto I-94 and blocked traffic for about five hours. The arrests occurred after the protesters were repeatedly ordered to disperse and some of the protesters began hurling rocks, bottles and fireworks at police officers, who also found themselves targeted by demonstrators tossing chunks of cement rebar from a construction site from a freeway overpass.
The crowd was eventually dispersed by officers using tear gas and smoke grenades and I-94 was reopened to traffic early Sunday.
A smaller group of demonstrators staged another march in St. Paul around 2:30 a.m. that led to a confrontation with police at about 4 a.m. A spokesman says that incident resulted in 52 people being detained and ticketed for unlawful assembly and public nuisance.
The demonstrations were sparked by the shooting death of 32-year-old Philando Castile after he was stopped by two St. Anthony Police Officers in Falcon Heights Wednesday evening.