Police officers in Minneapolis cleared Black Lives Matter protesters from the vestibule entrance to their own police station Wednesday afternoon.
The protest began last weekend. Police moved in quickly, intending to give the four women in the vestibule a choice between leaving or facing arrest. The scene quickly turned chaotic with protesters and police squaring off and some shouting and shoving taking place. The four women who had been occupying the vestibule fled.
At a press conference later, police inspector Mike Friestleben said, “the crowd became a little more violent and large rocks, large bricks were thrown.”
At that point, additional officers in helmets carrying crowd control weapons were called to the scene. One person at the scene was arrested in connection with an assault on a state trooper which took place earlier in the week.
Chief Janeé Harteau said the decision to clear the vestibule was made on public safety grounds to ensure the public could access the building.
The protests at the 4th precinct began after the shooting of Jamar Clark, a 24-year-old black man who was shot by police Sunday. Police claim Clark was shot during a struggle after reaching for an officer’s gun, but Black Lives Matter protesters have claimed Clark was handcuffed at the time he was killed.
On Wednesday, police released the names of the two officers involved in the shooting. They are Mark Ringgenberg and Dustin Schwarze, each with seven years of experience. The two officers were called to the scene of a domestic dispute after Jamar Clark reportedly interfered with paramedics who were tending to the victim.
Police have video of portions of the incident and maintain Clark was not handcuffed when he was shot.