Alleged Proud Boy members got into a violent clash with Black Lives Matter supporters in Seattle during a pro-police rally, while pro-police and anti-racism protesters brawled in Colorado.
The pro-police, anti-racism clashes that sparked across the Northwest are part of a larger discussion over policing and what role law enforcement plays in racial inequality.
In Seattle, thousands of pro-police supports donned blue and American patriotic colors as the massive crowd of demonstrators wrapped around city hall for a ‘Back the Blue’ rally.
The pro-police group was gathered outside Seattle City Hall ahead of Monday’s City Council vote expected to defund parts of the police department.
Thousands of pro-police supporters wrapped around Seattle City Hall on Sunday to fight against the police department being defunded
City officials announced that all northbound lanes in the area were closed as pro-police individuals waved American flags and held signs that read ‘Stop Defunding’ from behind a metal barricade.
At one point, alleged Proud Boys members arrived with an eponymous flag and joined pro-police supporters.
They were soon met with a group of anti-racism, Black Lives Matter supporters who arrived to counter-protest.
King 5 reports that the two opposing group tried to drown each other out with ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘Blue Lives Matter’ chants.
Protesters who arrived at City Hall were asked to wear blue in support of law enforcement and were hear chanting ‘Blue Lives Matter’
On Monday, Seattle City Council is expected to make a vote on defunding the local police department
Demands for the Seattle Police Deaprtment to be defunded were shouted by anti-racism, Black Lives Matter protesters, who previously urged city officials to divert 50 percent of the department’s funds to community initiatives.
David Lewsi, a counter-protester, told KOMO News that the point of defunding the police department is not abolish the entire institution.
‘What’s were saying is let’s allocate those funds, reallocate those funds, to people in industries and occupations that are trained to do so,’ he said.
‘This isn’t saying abolish the police altogether, this is saying put the funds in to the organizations that actually decrease the crime that we have here. If you increase education and housing and welfare in these neighborhoods, we won’t have as much crime.’
During the events, conservative journalist Jason Rants with KTHH Radio reported a number of small confrontations throughout the event.
And the situation turned violent when a number of alleged Proud Boys marched through the group of anti-racism protesters.
Proud Boys is a far-right group that focuses on ‘Western Values’ while having a history of misogyny, transphobia, islamophobia and white supremacy.
A photo taken from the scene appeared to show an alleged Proud Boy member making the
Local news stations and social media reported that a group of alleged Proud Boy members were at the demonstration and clashed with Black Lives Matter protesters
Some of the anti-racism protesters reportedly followed the alleged Proud Boys and a skirmish broke out.
Members of each group threw punches and fought on the concrete street as witnesses stood nearby.
KOMO News reports that at least one counter-protester was pepper sprayed by an alleged Proud Boys member.
A number of Seattle Police Department officers were spotted at the demonstration to make sure Black Lives Matter and pro-police supporters did not get into a conflict
By 5pm, pro-police protesters and anti-racism protesters had retired from their demonstrations as the roadways were cleared.
Shocking video posted to social media from the Fort Collins, Colorado, protests shows an all-out brawl as the police supporters pummel Black Lives Matter demonstrators they claimed had attacked a veteran in a wheelchair.
Moments before, the pro-police group, decked out in American flags and carrying Trump 2020 flags, where seen pushing back the counter-protesters blasting them as members of Antifa and ‘Commie scum’.
The violence suddenly sparked but claims that the BLM protesters attacked a man in a wheelchair seen earlier in the footage cannot be confirmed in the video.
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An all-out brawl erupted in a ditch between pro-police and anti-racism protesters in Fort Collins, Colorado on Saturday afternoon. Three were arrested for disorderly conduct
In a separate incident an anti-racism protester was beaten to the ground before his arrest
A high school student shared video to Instagram claiming the protester pictured above was arrested without cause. Fort Collins police say arrests were made over ‘physical altercations’
It instead shows Back the Blue rally attendees kneeling on top of the counter protesters who they ferociously punch and batter with American flags while the surrounding group continue to shout, ‘Go home, Commie Scum’.
‘Keep punching each other in the face but don’t shoot anybody,’ one person is heard shouting, warning all the keep away from their weapons.
Another person in the video, shot by a Back the Blue rally attendee, is also heard claiming that one of the anti-racism protesters had a knife but that it was taken off him.
Police arrive minutes later and arrest two of the BLM protesters, one of whom is shown in a video resisting arrest and trying to escape cops.
The violence erupted after the Back the Blue rally, which began outside of the Fort Collins Police Services building on Timberline Road, was met with two groups of counter-protesters.
Hundreds of police supporters had lined the street with ‘Thin Blue Line’ flags and ‘Defend the Police’ signs.
According to The Collegian, a Black Lives Matter rally had taken place at Colorado State University earlier in the day after which some traveled to Fort Collins Police Station to begin the counter-protest.
The pro-police protesters claimed the counter-protesters had assaulted a veteran in a wheelchair seen earlier in the clip but it could not be confirmed from footage shared
The counter-protesters are seen being held to the ground and pummeled
They report that there were peaceful conversations being held between the protesters and counter-protesters but that trouble began when a second group of anti-racism protesters emerged who were dressed all in black and whom the pro-police group began to refer to as Antifa.
‘As soon as I approached, I see people that have come from the side of the street from the pro-cops, they are wanting to, I want to say, … surround maybe three or four individuals who are holding up these signs that say Black Lives Matter to have a conversation,’ Julius Philpot, a frequent speaker at local Black Lives Matter rallies told the paper.
Yet after 20 minutes, the second group dressed in ‘all black tactical gear’ approached, he claimed.
The second group angered the pro-police protesters and they gathered to push them forward and away from the area while verbally harassing them.
‘So, we are currently marching the Antifa commie bas****s out of the neighborhood because nobody wants Antifa in the neighborhood. Nobody wants them here, so we’re marching them out,’ the pro-police protester recording the video narrated.
The pro-police group had chased the counter-protesters dressed all in black down two blocks
One person was heard telling those fighting to be careful not to shoot
‘I think it’s quite disgusting,’ said Brian Loma, founder of the Denver-based Cut the Plastic.
‘I value that these people want to have a rally and they want to hold the line, but what I saw was women and as well as some gentlemen being forced, pushed, not only off the sidewalk into the street and then basically chased for two blocks into a trail.’
Video of the incident was also shared online by local high school student and organizer with the Fort Collins People’s Initiative for Equity, Ciara Wilson, who is heard screaming at the violence to stop when the brawl erupts.
She said that despite the claims that the violence was started by the counter-protesters, it was the pro-police group who attacked without cause.
‘Once they get all the way down the street from the police station, it just goes into an all-out brawl in the middle of a grassy pit,’ Wilson told The Collegiate.
’10 to 15 people just piled up on top of each other. Chokeholds, batons, punched in the face all of it, and there were no police.
In other videos a Black Lives Matter protester is heard speaking to the police supporters and telling his fellow counter-protesters to be careful of their actions and not to start violence
A dozen men were seen brawling in the ditch as the counter-protesters were blasted as ‘Antifa’
The counter-protesters are seen trying to help each other up before cops arrest two of them
‘At the first pro-police rally that we’ve had in Fort Collins, I, a 16-year-old girl, witnessed two beatings, and then the people who got beat were the ones that got arrested when they were the ones who had been assaulted,’ she added.
‘It was getting so violent so quickly, and the Fort Collins Police Service did nothing to help. They came after everyone had already gotten viciously beaten, they didn’t arrest the correct people and they didn’t do anything to try to deescalate the situation. … It was horrendous.’
She shared four videos to Instagram of the violence and arrests, claiming that only the counter-protesters were detained and they were not told the reason for their arrest.
The first video she shared showed a closer view of the brawl then the one shot by the Back the Blue protester.
In the clip, she can be seen running toward the fight before standing helplessly as she screams for it to stop.
The counter-protesters are shown being pounded as they struggle to get up.
One manages to escape and begins to hit a pro-police demonstrator but is quickly grabbed around the neck and kept in a choke hold on the ground.
In another incident, a counter-protester is seen being beaten on the ground before police arrive and he is arrested. The reason for the violent incident is not known
Other counter-protesters scream for help and he is held to the ground and beaten. He was then led away by police while those who were beating him walked away
In the second video, Wilson again runs to help an anti-racism protester with three men kneeling on top of him while he kicks to try and escape.
‘Are you ok, sir? Are you ok? We’re here for you,’ she cries.
Police quickly arrive and appear to take the counter-protester who was being beaten away as somebody shouts that he ‘got lucky’.
Another video shows three police officers again kneeling on top of a protester to arrest him in the grass.
In Wilson’s final video, a Black Lives Matter protester is warning the other counter-protesters dressed all in black to be mindful of their actions and remember that they are representing the movement.
This protesters worked his fellow white anti-racism protesters not to incite violence
The group watched on before he was interrupted and shouted at by the police supporters
‘I can’t tell you how to act or react but what I’m saying is when you all want to say Black Lives Matter and you support that this,’ he begins before being interrupted.
‘They are gonna say black people started it and we brainwashed this person or this person I’m going to be the first person and the only person, as one of the only black people here,’ he adds before being interrupted by the pro-police group again.
Fort Collins Police Department was contacted by DailyMail.com to confirm the arrests made and the department’s report on the incident but a representative was not available.
In a statement to The Collegiate, however, Public Relations Manager Kate Kimble confirmed that ‘physical disturbances’ outside the station resulted in three arrests and one citation.
The booking report for the department on Saturday show that three people – two men and one woman- were arrested for disorderly conduct.
One of the men was also booked for possession of an illegal weapon.
‘We respect everyone’s right to peacefully assemble to voice their concerns,’ Kimble said. ‘For the safety of our community, acts of violence, destruction of property and other unlawful behavior will not be tolerated.’
She added there was an ‘active and ongoing investigation into these incidents’.
Anyone with information on the incidents is asked to contact Fort Collins police department.