DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Protests over police brutality resumed in the downtown area of Dallas Saturday afternoon. Although police said the demonstration mostly remained “peaceful” at the beginning, there have since been tense moments between officers and protesters, along with reports of looting and destruction.
Early in the afternoon, protesters could be seen marching through Downtown Dallas with signs in hand and outspoken residents after the in-custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and other police-related deaths involving black residents.
Police said they estimated around 700 people that attended Saturday afternoon’s march.
Police said at 4 p.m. that the march was back at city hall. One Texas Department of Public Safety vehicle was spray painted and multiple occupied squad cars were also damaged, police said.
There was a group of protesters that began confronting officers in the area near city hall. The growing tensions led to officers using tear gas to disperse the crowd.
Later in the evening, a crowd of protesters went onto Woodall Rogers Freeway near Routh Street, according to police. After being forced off with tear gas, the protesters then made their way onto Highway 75, blocking the road at times.
The group then continued to walk along the side of the highway.
Police tweeted just after 9 p.m. that a cigar and donut shop near Elm and Lamar streets had been looted.
Police later said at around 9:45 p.m. that the Whole Foods in the 2500 block of McKinney Avenue had also been looted
As of 10:45 p.m., there have been at least 74 arrests made and those arrested will be charged with inciting a riot, police said.
74 arrests have been made up to this point. They will be charged with inciting a riot.
27 arrested at McKinney Ave.
10 arrested on Freeways
1 arrest at Elm and Ervay
36 arrests at 1500 Young St.
— Dallas Police Dept (@DallasPD) May 31, 2020
This all comes after Friday evening when a protest began peacefully but quickly turned tense after a march began.
Groups that were separate from Friday’s march could be seen confronting police, destroying property and looting various businesses. These actions were quickly condemned by city leaders like Mayor Eric Johnson and Police Chief Renee Hall.
Hall told CBS 11 News Friday evening that people were throwing bricks at her officers and their vehicles and that she, herself, was almost hit by one.
During a news conference Saturday afternoon, the mayor and chief called for the protests that were planned for Saturday to begin and remain peaceful so that the demonstrations’ messages are drowned out by chaos.
“We applaud those who stand up and protest police brutality. Because we do too… but last night peaceful protests began but that is not how it ended. And what I want you to be clear about with me today… this police department will not tolerate rogue vandalism. We will not tolerate tearing up our city. We will not tolerate tearing up our communities…” Hall said Saturday.