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Chicago mayor praises police for quickly dealing with weekend protests

Brittany Jordan

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Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Sunday praised Chicago’s police officers for dealing with Saturday’s demonstrations “fairly quickly” after they devolved into violent skirmishes.

The mayor made the comments during a Sunday appearance on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” following Saturday’s demonstrations against police brutality.

Police stand guard as pro and anti-police demonstrators gather outside of the Homan Square police station on August 15, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois.

Police stand guard as pro and anti-police demonstrators gather outside of the Homan Square police station on August 15, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois.
(Getty Images)

The demonstrations started Saturday with a march around noon. Later, a separate demonstration near downtown resulted in two dozen arrests, 17 injured officers, and at least two injured protesters.

Lightfoot said that agitators “have embedded themselves in these seemingly peaceful protests and come for a fight” though the clashes were “over very fairly quickly because our police department is resolved to make sure that we protect peaceful protests.”

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Chicago Police Department Superintendent David Brown said that some in the group used black umbrellas to make it harder for police to see them, pushed officers and assaulted them.

In one video released by Chicago police, a person swinging a skateboard strikes an officer.

Activist groups and some elected officials, meanwhile, accused police officers of using aggressive tactics, including spraying the crowd with a chemical irritant and striking protesters with batons.

“The march was peaceful until CPD and other law enforcement agencies began an all-out assault on protesters,” said a Sunday statement from youth activist group Increase The Peace.

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The march came about a week after a police shooting of a black man in the city’s South Side prompted large crowds of people to go into Chicago’s downtown shopping area, where they smashed windows of businesses and took merchandise from stores.

A social media post had falsely claimed that police had fatally shot a 15-year-old, when in fact, the man was 20 years old and did not sustain life-threatening injuries.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Brittany Jordan is an award-winning journalist who reports on breaking news in the U.S. and globally for the Federal Inquirer. Prior to her position at the Federal Inquirer, she was a general assignment features reporter for Newsweek, where she wrote about technology, politics, government news and important global events around the world. Her work has also appeared in the Washington Post, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Toronto Star, Frederick News-Post, West Hawaii Today, the Miami Herald, and more. Brittany enjoys food, travel, photography, and hoarding notebooks and journals. Her goal is to do more longform features journalism, narrative writing and documentary work, and to one day write a successful novel and screenplay.

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