Fatalities And Injuries Climb As Riots Around The Nation Grow More Violent

Fatalities And Injuries Climb As Riots Around The Nation Grow More Violent

Another fatal weekend struck the United States as protests and riots around the country grow increasingly violent. Big cities such as Chicago, Seattle, Denver, Austin, and Portland all suffered from a weekend filled with chaos.

In Chicago, over 54 people were shot in the last three days with at least 2 recorded deaths. Record violence has plagued the city since protests surrounding George Floyd’s death and calls for defunding the police began in early June. 

In Seattle, rioters grew rowdier and began attacking buildings on Saturday. According to the Seattle Police Department, rioters set multiple buildings on fire and broke windows at the King County Youth Service Center/Judge Patricia H. Clark Children and Family Justice Center campus. They also attacked local businesses including a Starbucks attached to an apartment complex and the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct. There was at least one major explosion that caused damage to the precinct building. 

When police declared the gathering a riot, “the crowd threw bottles and balloons filled with liquid and shot mortar fireworks and tossed explosives at officers” leaving 21 officers with injuries. 45 rioters were arrested. 

 

In Aurora, Colorado, a suburb of Denver, authorities are investigating a shooting that injured two after a Jeep drove through a crowd of protestors. There were no injuries from the Jeep, which the driver claims he drove through the area because “he was scared and trying to get away” from attacks on his vehicle by rioters, but shots were still fired from the crowd. According to the Aurora Police Department, police are still investigating the shooting and the Jeep incident. 

 

In Austin, a similar incident unraveled when a group of protestors surrounded a car at a protest Saturday night. This time, however, the driver was the one who fatally shot protestor Garret Foster. At the time, Foster was wielding an AK-47 rifle.

“Austin’s police chief, Brian Manley, told reporters on Sunday that as the motorist turned, a crowd of protesters surrounded the vehicle, and some struck the car,” said the New York Times. “Minutes after the shooting, the driver called 911 and said he had been involved in a shooting and had driven away from the scene, Chief Manley said. The caller told dispatchers he had shot someone who had approached the driver’s window and pointed a rifle at him.”

In an interview earlier in the evening, Foster explained that he brought his gun to exercise his open carry and 2nd Amendment rights. 

“They don’t let us march in the streets anymore, so I got to practice some of our rights,” Foster said. “If I use it against the cops, I’m dead.”

In Portland, gunfire, arson, stabbings, and other violence followed rioters as they made their way across the city. By Sunday, rioters had breached and surrounded the Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse causing the incident to be declared an official riot. According to the Associated Press, federal agents used tear gas, flash bangs and pepper balls to ward off rioters early into Monday morning. As of Sunday, Portland police had arrested at least 26 people and alerted the public that they found molotov cocktails as well as loaded rifle magazines. 

 

Federal agents established a controversial presence in the area to help protect and defend federal buildings as well as quell violence that many have said local and state officials have failed to do. President Trump criticized Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler’s handling of the situation on Thursday.

“He made a fool out of himself,” Trump told Sean Hannity on Fox News. “He wanted to be among the people so he went into the crowd and they knocked the hell out of him. That was the end of him.”

Oregon’s U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams called for the “violent extremists” to cease their rioting and reinforced the idea of a federal presence in the area on Saturday. 

“Until that happens, we’re going to do what we need to do to protect federal property,” Williams said. “When the violence ends, then there won’t be a need for the presence of nightly federal officers… It seems quite simple.”

While the Department of Homeland security and other agencies have acknowledged the presence of Antifa at the riots and are possibly instigating them, some Democrats are not taking the attacks as seriously. Representative and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee Jerry Nadler told one journalist that he thinks Antifa hosting the Portland riots is a “myth.”

“That’s a myth that’s being spread only in Washington, D.C.,” Nadler said. 

Despite Chairman Nadler’s claims, the federal government is treating the riots in Portland as very real. In a statement released on Sunday, the Department of Homeland Security called the rioters “violent anarchists” and said many officers have been injured because of the rioters’ “assaults.”

“The violent situation Portland has witnessed for the past eight weeks continues with violent anarchists rioting on the streets as federal law enforcement officers work diligently and honorably to enforce federal law, defend federal property, and protect the lives of their fellow officers,” DHS said. “As federal officers left the courthouse to respond to attacks on the fence, just like on previous nights they were met by rioters with hard projectiles, mortar style fireworks and lasers that can cause permanent blindness. Over the previous 24 hours, such assaults have resulted in at least 14 federal officers injured.”

In addition to the violence stemming from protests and riots, two black Trump supporters were attacked this weekend in two different cities. 

In Portland, an Antifa member and convicted pedophile stabbed a black Trump supporter who goes by the name “Black Rebel.” According to The Post Millennial, Black Rebel claims Antifa members released his identity to an online community warning each other about him. 

When he noticed a group of people following him and his friends around Portland, Black Rebel finally confronted them, asking why they were targeting him. That’s when David Hampe stabbed him. 

Black Rebel updated followers of his condition via his social media and Periscope live-streams. Others also posted about the stabbing as well as the response from the rioters.

 

 

Police are investigating another shooting which claimed the life of Bernell Trammell, a “fixture” who ran a political and religious journal called eXpressions in Milwaukee. He was also well-known in the community for holding up signs expressing his religious and political beliefs including his support for President Trump.

Because of Trammell’s outspoken nature, many are skeptical of his death that occurred in broad daylight and are publicly wondering if there is any connection to his political beliefs. 

 

 

 

 

Jordan Davidson is an intern for The Federalist and a recent graduate of Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.
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