Hundreds more Black Lives Matter protesters arrested across America

Dozens more demonstrators have been arrested overnight in cities across America as protests against the killings of two black men raged on for a sixth night as authorities warned they would not tolerate violence.

At least 48 people were taken into custody in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where Alton Sterling was shot dead on Tuesday last week, amid clashes with officers following an earlier peaceful march.

Meanwhile in Minnesota, where Philandro Castile’s shooting death by cops was broadcast on Facebook live on Wednesday, around 200 people shut down Interstate 94 in St Paul for hours as officers reported being hit by rocks, bottles, concrete, construction materials and fireworks.

Demonstrators took to the streets of Baton Rouge, where Alton Sterling was shot dead on Tuesday, for the sixth day in a row as police say 48 were arrested overnight amid clashes with officers

Meanwhile activists also took to the streets of Minnesota to protest the killing of Philandro Castile. Scenes turned ugly after protesters occupied a roadway and began throwing bricks and fireworks at officers

Hundreds of people also shut down the Hernando Desoto Bridge in Memphis, Tennessee, meaning traffic was stopped on the highway for hours before they were persuaded to disperse

Demonstrations also spread to Newport News, in Virginia, where marchers pumped their fists in to the air as they walked down the city's main thoroughfare on Sunday night

Oklahoma City also saw hundreds of people take to the streets to protest the killings of black suspects by police officers

In Tennessee around 1,000 people shut down a key bridge over the Mississippi River meaning traffic was stopped for hours, while in Los Angeles hundreds of activists also closed the 405 freeway chanting: ‘Hey ho, hey ho, these racist cops have got to go.’

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.

Tensions rose further after Micah Johnson, an Afghan 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.

At least 48 people were arrested in Baton Rouge as officers attempted to keep the peace after almost a week of protests in the city

The fresh arrests come after 102 people were taken to jail last night, with police chiefs saying they are unwilling to accept any violence

Black Lives Matter protesters are continuing to demonstrate following the death of Alton Sterling earlier this week, who was shot dead by white police officers while selling CDs 

Heavily armored police officers took to the streets in Baton Rouge backup up by SWAT teams wielding assault rifles

Of those arrested in Baton Rouge, the majority have been charged with obstructing highways, though there have been incidences of violence against police there

Among those arrested yesterday was prominent Black Lives Matter activist DeRay McKesson, who was released today (pictured)

Protesters from Louisiana or out of state will not be allowed ‘to incite hate and violence, to engage in unlawful activities,’ Edwards told a news conference. ‘Now I want to be very clear. That will not be tolerated.’ Edwards also said that blocking traffic was cause for arrest.

The mayor of St Paul and a protest leader both decried the violence that erupted there which injured 21 officers and led to 102 arrests.

St. Paul police said one officer suffered a broken vertebrae when a concrete block was dropped on his head during the protest on the interstate.

‘We will not tolerate the kind of shameless violence we saw throughout the course of the night,’ St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman told a news conference. ‘This doesn’t honor anyone’s memory.

In St. Paul, Rashad Turner, leader of the local chapter of the Black Lives Matter group, told WCCO-TV that the throwing of rocks and bottles at officers was disturbing. He blamed outside agitators for the violence, not the protesters on the freeway.

‘It’s ridiculous. It cannot happen. It’s not what we do here in St. Paul,’ Turner said. ‘It does not honor Philando Castile.’

Meanwhile peaceful early protests turned nasty in Minnesota after activists occupied Interstate 94 for hours and began hurling construction materials at officers

Activists have spent days protesting in Minnesota after Philandro Castile was shot dead during a traffic stop as his girlfriend streamed the harrowing experience on Facebook live

One Minnesota police officer was left with a fractured vertebrae after demonstrators dropped a brick on to his head from a highway

At least 50 demonstrators were arrested during the day's events in Minnesota, with the majority of those coming amid the violence 

Meanwhile in Dallas, where five cops were shot dead earlier this week, protesters also gathered to demand justice for those killed in police shootings (pictured, police sergeant Paul Hinton takes part in a prayer circle with Black Lives Matter protesters)

The Dallas demonstrations were met by counter demonstrators demanding the police lives be protected

Authorities said 50 protesters were arrested on the Minnesota interstate and 52 others later on a street near the governor’s mansion, the site of most of the protests since Castile was shot on Wednesday.

‘Protesters last night turned into criminals,’ St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell said. ‘And I am absolutely disgusted by the acts of some, not all, but some.’

Some 300 people attended a peaceful protest on Sunday afternoon at the St. Anthony Police Department. St. Anthony police patrol the Falcon Heights suburb where Castile was shot.

In Baton Rouge, the capital of Louisiana, police said protests outside their headquarters appeared to be becoming more violent as protesters arrived from out of town.

After his arrest, Mckesson was booked on a misdemeanor charge of obstructing the highway and released from the East Baton Rouge Parish jail, according to the sheriff’s website.

Baton Rouge police confiscated three rifles, three shotguns and two pistols at Saturday night’s protest and were wearing helmets, shields and body armor.

Police said those arrested had ignored repeated orders to stay out of the street, while demonstrators said officers charged into the crowds seemingly without any obvious provocation.

‘The only people who were violent last night were the Baton Rouge Police department,’ Mckesson told reporters after his release. ‘The protesters remained peaceful, both here and across the country.’

New Jersey also saw protests take place on Sunday as waves of racial unrest sweep across America following the police shooting of two black men last week

Hundreds of Black Lives Matter demonstrators took to the streets in New Jersey to demand justice for black people killed by police

Necie, right, who did not give her last name, from Houston, hugs Oklahoma City police officer R. White during a Black Lives Matter rally

Oklahoma also saw counter demonstrations take place by a group of activists who took to the streets waving confederate flags

Source: The DailyMail

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