Dozens more arrests in Louisiana after leaders warn against protest violence
Updated: 2016-07-11 14:44
A demonstrator is detained by police during protests in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, US, July 10, 2016. [Photo/Agencies]
MINNEAPOLIS/BATON ROUGE, La. - Police arrested dozens more protesters in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Sunday after authorities warned they would not tolerate violence during street demonstrations over the fatal police shootings of two black men.
Photos and video posted on social media by witnesses and journalists showed protesters being arrested in different parts of the city by police officers who told the crowds they were no longer holding peaceful demonstrations or that they were blocking major thoroughfares.
Louisiana media, citing Baton Rouge police, reported that at least 48 people were taken into custody after demonstrators clashed with police on Sunday evening following an earlier peaceful march to the state capitol.
The protests follow the shootings by police of Alton Sterling, 37, in Baton Rouge and Philando Castile, 32, in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota.
Calls for demonstrations to remain peaceful in Louisiana and Minnesota came as authorities grappled with a wave of protests against police use of force that has swept the country in the past week.
A US military veteran shot and killed five police officers at a spontaneous march in Dallas on Thursday, sending a chill through law enforcement as well as those involved in the mostly peaceful demonstrations.
In Baton Rouge, police arrested 102 people on Saturday night and Sunday morning, mostly for misdemeanors for not leaving a major thoroughfare known as Airline Highway. Those arrested included DeRay Mckesson, an activist and former Baltimore mayoral candidate, officials said.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards told a news conference earlier on Sunday that he was proud of how the police had handled the protests so far, saying law enforcement had responded in a "moderate" manner. He also said the vast majority of protesters had acted lawfully and non-violently.
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