DENTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – The crowd outside the Denton County Courthouse Tuesday evening came to condemn hate in all forms.
“We can make Denton safer for everyone. Except Nazis,” said Denton City Council member Deb Armintor, addressing about 100 people.
Chanting “Denton for all” as they marched around the square, the group’s message was a striking contrast to the one heard several blocks away Saturday night.
Videos show a group carrying brightly lit road flares and American flags and shouting “Reclaim America”, a phrase often used by the white supremacist group Patriot Front, which appeared to take responsibility on social media.
Inside the Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios bar, employees and patrons are seen in one video reacting in horror.
“Everyone was just in pure shock,” said Cameron, who works at the bar.
He wasn’t there Saturday night. Those who were declined interviews.
“People are recovering. People are being very timid. They don’t really want to talk too much about it,” he said.
In a separate incident Sunday, the Harvest House bar called police after employees say a group with swastika tattoos walked in. When a manager asked the group to leave, they reported, one of the men punched him in the face.
“I was angry. I was very angry,” said council member Deb Armintor.
She plans to ask Denton City Council to officially condemn what happened, speaking out for those she says are under attack.
“There are a lot of people who are not out here tonight because they don’t feel safe being out here,” she said.
Denton police are investigating Sunday’s incident as an assault. Council member Armintor says she’d like to request they look at it as a hate crime.
Police were present and visible throughout Tuesday evening’s rally. It remained a peaceful event.