11 arrested after demonstration outside Richmond City Justice Center

Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Protesters and police clashed Tuesday night at a protest outside the Richmond City Justice Center.

The demonstration was calling for the release of everyone incarcerated inside of the jail because of the coronavirus outbreak, as it was advertised on Twitter. As of August 24, more than 100 inmates and staff were quarantined because of a positive COVID-19 test or exposure to someone who tested positive for the virus.

A flyer for Tuesday’s event read: “Our comrades on the inside are facing retaliation from officers for simply requesting adequate medical attention. These conditions are inhumane. We stand in solidarity with those who have been kidnapped, convicted and caged.”

Protests got underway around 6 p.m. in the grassy area beside the jail. After an advance by police, protesters moved to the street.

A cyclist was then seen blocking a tow truck that arrived to remove cars parked illegally in the area. When police approached him, the cyclist jumped on his bike and pedaled away into oncoming traffic.

He was then approached by an unmarked police cruiser. After the vehicle stopped, an officer ran out of the car and tackled the cyclist to the ground. Once on the ground, several officers came to provide backup.

Here’s how Richmond Police described the incident:

Shortly before 7:00 p.m., a bicyclist blocked a tow truck as it attempted to remove a vehicle parked illegally outside the Justice Center. When an RPD officer arrived, the bicyclist attempted to flee the scene and was stopped by the officer. Other protesters attempted to interfere with that arrest and others that followed. They were also arrested.

Statement from Richmond Police Department

Watch the incident below:

Richmond Police arrested 11 people Monday night, according to a release by the department. 8News observed several people being detained by officers.

Richmond Police add that the bicyclist was charged with obstructing a tow truck as it attempted to remove an illegally parked vehicle. According to police, 10 more people were charged with obstructing Richmond officers with force as “they attempted to restore order.”

“At the time, the RPD officers were assisting the Richmond Sheriff’s Office in dealing with those protesters who had moved from the public sidewalk onto Justice Center grounds – causing a security concern,” police added.

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