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Several demonstrators and at least two security guards were reportedly injured as tensions flared at the City Hall in Portland, Oregon, this week.
According to The Oregonian, protests against police brutality turned violent after authorities fired nonlethal rounds on those gathered near the municipal building for a prior demonstration.
Multiple protesters with masks or bandanas covering their faces emerged from an increasingly hostile group of demonstrators, as revealed in a video of the altercation.
One individual was seen apparently beating a security officer in the head with a megaphone before running off. That victim was later observed tending to a bruised face with a bag of ice.
The chief of security for Portland’s City Hall told The Oregonian she was hit in the arm by a demonstrator during the melee.
Portland Police Sgt. Chris Burley said the department arrested two individuals trespassing charges. One was identified as 67-year-old Diane Keeauver and the other was described as a man wearing a bandana who was forcibly removed from the building after lying down outside the mayor’s office.
(Warning: The video below contains graphic language.)
All things considered, authorities say officers handled the threat effectively, preventing further violence between anti-police protesters and law enforcement supporters.
According to The Oregonian, the original protest at City Hall was a spillover from the events surrounding a clash Saturday between militant liberal groups and conservative activists hosting a Patriot Prayer rally.
Demonstrators at the earlier gathering told the newspaper that Portland police used undue force in dispersing those taking part in the anti-Patriot Prayer protest.
One 52-year-old protester said she suffered third-degree burns from an officer’s flash-bang grenade.
“I should be home recovering from the pain and trauma I’m suffering,” Michelle Fawcett told The Oregonian. “But I’m also suffering from complete outrage and powerlessness.”
As the U.K. Guardian reported Monday, Fawcett received serious injuries to multiple parts of her body at the weekend clash.
“I heard the most earth-shattering explosion,” she told the liberal British newspaper. “I felt struck in the chest, then the arm, and then a really intense and searing pain.”
A 28-year-old man said he was left wondering why he was “shot in the head by the cops” after he said a nonlethal projectile left him with a bloodied forehead.
Following several injuries, including the hospitalization of Fawcett and at least two other demonstrators, Portland police announced the department would temporarily halt the use of aerial distraction devices like the one that caused Fawcett’s injuries.